Often it's said that, starting out a season, performance improves the most from the first game to the second.
The Cazenovia girls lacrosse team put a small twist on that theory, seeing a considerable increase in its level of play after it got hammered by Skaneateles 19-5 in its April 2 opener.
From there, the Lakers met another Class C powerhouse, Christian Brothers Academy, last Tuesday night at Alibrandi Stadium, getting much closer, but still losing to the Brothers 18-9.
Though it had solid production in each half, Cazenovia could not match CBA's pace as Taylor Gait and Marisa Romeo led the Brothers with four goals apiece, while Caroline Webster and Sophie Racciatti each had three goals.
Gabby Jaquith led both sides, scoring five times before the night was done. Kaitlyn Button and Hillary Bullock had two-goal outings, with Bullock adding two assists and Button joining Colleen Dougherty with single assists.
From there, the Lakers made yet another daunting road trip Thursday night, to Marcellus, and improved even more, nearly coming out on top before taking a tough 10-9 defeat to the Mustangs.
Slowing down the tempo in the first half, Cazenovia won draws and used long possessions to test Marcellus' patience. It worked, for a while, as the Lakers went to the break nursing a 3-2 lead.
And even as the pace quickened in the second half, Cazenovia hung in there with a chance until the game's final moments thanks to a stellar defense and eight saves from goalie Lauren Devine.
The attack was deeper and more balanced, too, as Rebecca Wheeler joined Bullock and Button, each of them scoring twice and getting one assist. Jaquith, the focus of most of the Mustangs' defensive attention, still managed a goal and three assists as Dougherty and Mary Kate Conley landed goals, too. Kristina Kleine added an assist.
Cazenovia still would not get much of a break from the schedule, though, as on Monday a rematch with Skaneateles loomed at the Fenner Street complex for the team's home opener.