Oct 23, 2011 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
According to plan, the Liverpool girls soccer team would mop up against neighbor and rival Cicero-North Syracuse and proceed forward to the Section III Class AA playoffs as the favorite for its first outright championship in a decade.
Except that the Northstars didn’t read the script – or if it did, threw it out and replaced it with something far more unexpected.
CNS, who had not distinguished itself too much during the regular season, rose up, went to LHS Stadium and stunned the state no. 3-ranked Warriors 2-1. And by doing so, the Northstars dropped Liverpool from the top seed for the AA tournament.
Breanna Sharpe got on the board in the first half, but CNS countered and it was 1-1 going into the break. Then the Northstars moved out in front in the second half, hanging on behind an inspired defensive effort and goalie Miranda Tanner’s eight saves.
Erika Falinski proved the main facilitator in the CNS attack, assisting on both goals as Aly Falinski and Lauren DeOrdio came up with the goals. Liverpool goalie Tori Corsaro had four saves.
To fill some of the time before meeting CNS, Liverpool picked up a non-league game against Chenango Forks, from the Section IV ranks.
The Warriors bashed the Blue Devils 8-0 in that match. Remarkably, those eight goals came from eight different players – Kayla Whalen, Julia Heberger, Alexis Kline, Courtney Szczesniak, Ore Akinpelu, Morgan Wright, Breanna Sharpe and Kayla Case.
Whalen added a pair of assists as Kim Murphy, Nikki Carfi, Emma Geyer, Mallorie O’Brien and Kayla Bills got one assist apiece.
CNS played on Tuesday night, at Oswego, and with a solid all-around effort moved back to the .500 mark, handling the Buccaneers 4-1.
Marissa Puma, with two goals, led the Northstars’ attack. Stephanie Liberati and Erika Falinski also scored, while Reid Garner picked up an assist.
Good as that was, it gave no hint as to what CNS would pull off against Liverpool four days later, and suddenly the post-season got a lot more intriguing on all fronts.
When the AA bracket was announced on Sunday, Liverpool, indeed, found itself down the no. 2 spot, and starting at a quarterfinal against no. 7 seed Fayetteville-Manlius. The winner here gets Watertown or West Genesee in the semifinals.
And CNS has the no. 5 seed, headed to Alibrandi Stadium Friday night to face no. 4 seed CBA, and a victory here could mean a shot at defending champion Baldwinsville, who rose to the no. 1 seed in the wake of the Northstars’ win at Liverpool.