May 02, 2012 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
West Genesse’s latest conquest of Fayetteville-Manlius in boys lacrosse, a 9-7 decision Tuesday night on the Hornets’ new artificial turf field, is a prime example of how a single, well-timed goal can turn a troubling situation into a triumphant one.
Outplayed for the entire first half and trailing 4-1 as the second quarter wound down, the Wildcats were spiraling toward a defeat that may have altered the entire picture among top Class A title contenders.
Then Matt Schattner went to work.
With the clock ticking down, Schattner took possession of the ball, wove his way through F-M’s defenders and, with three seconds left, fired a bounce shot that eluded Hornets goalie Dan Wells and found the net.
“I called for the ball,” said Schattner. “I had to do something to get us going.”
He did that, and then some. Though it still trailed 4-2 going into the break, the Wildcats carried all of its newfound energy into a third quarter that it thoroughly dominated, racing to a 6-4 lead and never getting caught.
“We knew we could come back, because we’ve done it before,” said Tim Barber, who led the Wildcats with two goals and three assists. “We kept our calm and kept going.”
F-M seized control just 15 seconds into the game when Ryan Simmons, off the opening face-off, raced in and beat Scott Sidnam, the only goal for either team in the first quarter.
Simmons and Kevin Lux added goals early in the second period, and it took nearly 19 minutes of game time before Barber put WG on the board. But Simmons answered 57 seconds later with his third goal.
And that’s where it stood when Schattner hit his goal just before halftime. Fueled by that, the Wildcats pulled even, 4-4, early in the third period as, on two straight plays, Barber fed Jake Darrow for goals.
Late in the period, goals by R.J. Tinklepaugh and Brett Henderson less than 90 seconds apart gave WG a 6-4 lead, and now it was F-M that was forced into a futile chase.
Twice in the fourth quarter, the Hornets did get within one, at 6-5 and 7-6. Both times, the Wildcats had ready answers, capped by Barber and Schattner hitting goals in the waning minutes that provided the winning margin.
Sidnam made all sorts of key stops down the stretch and finished with 10 saves overall. In front of him, defenders Garrett Waldron, Jake Sutherland and Jim Cunningham clamped down in the second half, forcing a rash of F-M turnovers.
This completed WG’s regular-season sweep of the Hornets, whom it beat 7-5 in Camillus a month ago. It also improved the Wildcats’ record to 11-1 as it sits in the no. 6 spot in the state Class A rankings.