Though it was making its state Class C tournament debut, the Cazenovia boys lacrosse team was far from nervous as it went to Ithaca High School for Wednesday night's regional opener against Section IV champion Chenango Forks and roared to an 18-3 victory over the Blue Devils.
This matchup was familiar to Cazenovia sports fans, based on the Class B football regional playoff games in 2006 and 2007, both of them low-scoring affairs won by Forks.
But that didn't matter to these Lakers, nor did a last-minute venue shift from Corning to Ithaca due to the death of Corning's athletic director, Tim Decker.
Eager to get started again four days after conquering Sknaeateles 12-6 in the Section III Class C final, Cazenovia jumped all over Forks, leading 7-0 after one period. The Blue Devils finally got on the board in the second quarter, but the Lakers kept pulling further away and had a 12-2 edge at the break.
Four straight goals in the third quarter sealed it, as Mason Powell, with four goals and two assists, led a potent and well-balanced attack.
Sean Cannizzaro and Joe Nardella both had four goals and one assist, while Connor Cannizzaro managed his own three-goal hat trick. John Greacen added two goals and one assist as Lucas Dorsey also scored and Oliver Gates picked up an assist.
On Saturday, Cazenovia goes north, to Potsdam, to face unbeaten (16-0) Salmon River) in the Class C regional final, the winner advancing to next Wednesday's state semifinals at St. John Fisher College near Rochester against Penn Yan or Silver Creek.
And there's plenty of familiarity here, too, for many of these same Cazenovia and Salmon River players clashed on the ice in a regional final in early March that the Lakers won on its way to a state title, which could only add to the intensity of the encounter.