Right at the end of the regular season, each of the Cicero-North Syracuse lacrosse teams earned a valuable victory.
First, the boys Northstars beat Rome Free Academy, 17-11, Tuesday night at Bragman Stadium, perhaps improving its Section III Class A playoff seeding in the process as it closed the regular season with a 10-6 mark.
In a high-scoring first quarter, C-NS inched out in front, 6-4, and kept turning away the Black Knights in the second periods, too, as the margin grew to 9-6 at halftime.
Then the Northstars all but put it away in the third period with a 6-2 spurt, led by Matt Kennedy, who had three goals and four assists, and Scott Slater, who found the net four times.
In support, Tom Koster, Mike Fiorini and Dylan Collins each scored twice. Zach Waldron, Zach DeBottis, Matt O’Donnell and Gabe Lavere got the other goals, while Rob Spenard earned an assist. C-NS goalie Bryan Schenk recorded 15 saves.
A night later, it was the C-NS girls turn to step up – which it did by gradually pulling away from Oswego in the second half and beating the Buccaneers 11-7.
As it steadily worked its way to a 6-5 halftime lead, the Northstars did not find it difficult to solve Oswego goalie Tayler Bowman, who was just named to play in the Under Armour All-American Game on June 30 at Towson University near Baltimore.
Then the defense took over, holding the Bucs to just two goals in the second half as the margin expanded. Tiffany Ryan scored three times, adding an assist, while Sarah Bowles and Stephanie Liberati managed two goals apiece.
Offering the support, Kristi Thompson got one goal and one assist as Jill Goettel, Meghan Duffy and Miriam Ghabarou earned one goal apiece. In the net, Stefani Reynolds recorded eight saves.
Both C-NS teams have no. 5 seeds for the Section III Class AA playoffs. For the girls Northstars, this meant a trip to play no. 4 seed Fayetteville-Manlius Tuesday night, the winner to get top seed West Genesee in Thursday’s semifinal at CBA’s Alibrandi Stadium.
Meanwhile, the C-NS boys had plenty of incentive for its opening playoff game Thursday night at no. 4 seed Baldwinsville, for a win would mean playing on home turf in Saturday night’s semifinal against West Genesee or Central Square.