Sep 19, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
On Sept. 19, 2012, East Syracuse-Minoa’s field hockey team took reigning Onondaga High School League power Cazenovia to overtime, only to fall, 2-1, to the Lakers in the opening minute of the extra period.
One day short of exactly one year later, on the same Spartan Stadium turf, the same two teams went beyond 60 minutes of regulation and, again, it was decided in the first minute of OT, by that same 2-1 margin – this time, in ESM’s favor.
It was Amy Loder doing the honor for the victorious Spartans, taking a pass from Stephanie Edmonds and, 37 seconds into OT, slapping a shot past Cazenovia goalie Kimber Nourse to end it.
Every ESM player remembered what had happened in 2012, perhaps also realizing that the fact that it did push the Lakers, riding a 75-game league win streak at the time, helped propel the Spartans, from a confidence standpoint, as it went on to win the Section III Class B title.
Now both sides were defending sectional champions, but were coming off vastly different results against the same common opponent.
The Lakers had beaten Weedsport 2-0 on Sept. 13, giving head coach Lorraine Scheftic her 200th career win. But ESM lost to those same Warriors 2-1 the day before facing Cazenovia, unable to hold on to a 1-0 halftime lead.
This time around, neither side was able to relax. a furious pace brought multiple scoring opportunities on both ends, and at the 10:49 mark of the first half, the Spartans seized a 1-0 lead when Nourse was unable to clear Loder’s hard shot from the point, and Tiffany Evans put home the rebound.
Late in the half, the Lakers tied it, 1-1, as Ashley Kent emerged from a scramble in front of the ESM net to slip it past Rachel Aird. Seconds later, a possible ESM goal was disallowed, and with 4:35 left in the half, Aird made the night’s biggest save when she stuffed Rachel McLaughlin’s penalty stroke.
So it stayed 1-1, not just through halftime, but through a tense 30-minute second half. Both sides had multiple penalty corners that it could not convert, but Aird made twice as many saves (12) as Nourse, aided by Sadie Zacharek, Haley Albertson, Gina Monteleone, Heidi Reichert and the rest of the back line.
As it happened, ESM gained the first possession in the 10-minute, seven-on-seven OT period. Cazenovia had the honor a year ago, and Emily Willard took just 22 seconds to slap home the game-winner.
This time, it was Loder’s turn, and with that, ESM improved to 5-1 on the season, while Cazenovia fell to 4-2. The two sides meet again at Burton Street Elementary School on Oct. 8.