All the momentum the Westhill boys lacrosse team thought it had picked up by knocking off state-ranked CBA on May 11 did not last long.
The Warriors met Marcellus in Wednesday’s regular-season finale, and the Mustangs, coming off its own tough defeat to Homer, would recover by beating the Warriors 11-6.
It was a near-identical result to the 12-6 Marcellus win when the two sides first met on April 20, and the start proved important, the Mustangs inching its way into a 4-2 lead.
From there, it turned into a chase. Every time Westhill wanted to move closer, Marcellus would clamp down and, instead, expand the margin, proving especially stingy in the second half when it held the Warriors to two goals.
Tom McNaney, with three goals and two assists, led a balanced Mustang attack. Mike McNaney and Kevin Hutchings each had two goals and one assist, with Dalton Wenzel also finding the net twice. Morgan Reilly had the other goal.
Austin Webb (three goals) and Owen Nicola (two goals) accounted for most of the Warriors’ attack. Luke Longo had the other goal, with Jack Centore adding an assist. Combined, goalies Jack Sweeney and Chris Lawton made 17 saves.
In reality, Westhill’s momentum dissipated in last Monday’s game against Skaneateles, where the Warriors were shut out in the first half and never recovered in a 6-3 loss to the Lakers.
Skaneateles had just pushed defending state Class C champion Cazenovia to overtime on the same day that Westhill beat CBA.
Fueled by that effort (and angry that it had lost to those other Lakers), the Lakers went all-out on the defensive end, never letting the Warriors get on the board during those first two periods.
Trailing 3-0 at the break, Westhill finally scored in the third quarter, but Skaneateles still expanded the margin to 6-1. Centore, Webb and Mark Purcell earned those late goals, with Nicola adding an assist. Tyler Strods led Skaneateles with a three-goal hat trick.