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Field hockey Lakers win tourney final in OT

Caz edges New Hartford, 2-1, on Silfer goal

For the second week in a row, the Cazenovia field hockey team was forced into overtime – and once again, it came out on top.

This time around, the setting was Saturday’s final of the O’Connor Classic in Camden, where the Lakers met the host Blue Devils, two-time defending Section III Class B champions, and pulled out a 2-1 decision on Jessie Silfer’s decisive goal.

From an energy standpoint, Cazenovia had a clear edge, having breezed past New Hartford 4-0 in its part of the opening round as Camden had to go into overtime and penalty strokes to finally get rid of Rome Free Academy after a 1-1 draw.

But in the first half, Camden’s Nicole Williams scored to match the tally from Cazenovia’s Rachel Nourse, leaving the two sides even. And it stayed 1-1 through the second half as the Lakers were put to one of its sternest defensive tests so far.

Camden took nearly twice as many shots as the Lakers. However, the back line of SarahRose Gabor, Maggie Carpenter and Maggie Namy, helped by Silfer, turned away chances, and Lauren Devine was superb in goal, recording nine saves.

So they went to seven-on-seven overtime, just as Cazenovia had done when it beat Cortland 2-1 on Jillian Vogl’s game-winner on Sept. 21. Here it took just 24 seconds for the Lakers to set up a penalty corner and watch Silfer fling the decisive shot home.

All this followed a first-round romp over New Hartford where Nicole Chiarello took a starring role. Cazenovia dominated the flow of play, taking 17 shots to the Spartans’ one, and three times Chiarello converted to earn a hat trick. Emily Willard had the other goal, with Vogl earning an assist.

The Lakers were supposed to face Rome Free Academy last Tuesday night, but rain and lightning caused a postponement.

After going to Cato-Meridian on Monday, the Lakers (8-1) finally return home to Burton Street for back-to-back games against East Syracuse-Minoa on Wednesday and Port Byron on Friday.

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