At this moment, the Skaneateles ice hockey team is banking its entire status as a Division II title contender on the fact that it can, at times, just shut down the opposition.
That happened again last Wednesday night, when the Lakers ventured to Whitesboro and put together its second straight shutout, beating the Warriors 3-0.
This followed Skaneateles blanking Fulton 3-0 on Jan. 14. In both those games, the common denominator was an effective defense and a star turn from goaltender Trevor Diamond.
Here, Diamond made 22 saves, and Skaneateles did not entirely relieve the pressure from him, taking 30 shots as the night progressed.
However, single goals in each period proved sufficient, as Mike Benson converted two of them and Tyler Stanton landed the other goal. Jon Rogalia, Rory Callahan, Jim Rodgers and Brendan Major each had one assist.
Now the Lakers entered a crucial home-and-home weekend series with CBA/J-D, a circumstance created when the Dec. 15 game between the two sides at Allyn Arena got snowed out.
First, they met Friday, on the Brothers' home ice at Onondaga Nation Arena in Nedrow, and it was the Lakers again coming up with a victory, this one a narrow 2-1 verdict.
Dom Scicchtano's goal gave CBA/J-D a 1-0 edge in the first period. From there, though, Diamond shut things down, finishing with 25 saves and giving his side plenty of time to come back.
This is exactly what Skaneateles did, a goal in each of the last two periods putting them in front. Jacob Cooney scored once and assisted on Callahan's tally, with Rogalia and Jack Fabrizio earning assists, too.
None of this good play carried over to the rematch Saturday at Allyn Arena. Diamond was off, and CBA/J-D took full advantage to beat the Lakers 5-2 and salvage a split.