Camillus As is traditional in each edition of the Wildcat Invitational, two West Genesee lacrosse teams took part – the varsity side, and the junior varsity side.
And this time around, the JV Wildcats trumped their older compatriots, going 3-0-1 for third place overall as part of the annual John Pepper Lacrosse Tournament weekend.
In all, 16 high school teams took part in the invitational. Local sides from Jamesville-DeWitt, Fayetteville-Manlius, Baldwinsville, Liverpool, LaFayette, Carthage and Watertown IHC joined the two Wildcats sides.
Top Tier, from North Carolina, and an Atlanta squad from Georgia joined the fun, too, as did Buffalo-area power Timon/St. Jude, Penfield, Canandaigua, Webster Thomas and Penn Yan. Each of them would play four games, with two 23-minute halves and no overtime.
Part of the tournament’s attraction was a large presence of college coaches. Organizers say more than 90 coaches from Division I, II and III of the NCAA ranks took part.
Thus, when the West Genesee JV side was deadlocked with Watertown IHC 9-9 in the opener, the tie wasn’t broken. Unfazed, the JV went on to edge Carthage 6-5 two hours later to appear in the win column for the first time.
During the afternoon session, the JV Wildcats won again, doubling up Canandaigua 8-4, and it completed play with another impressive defensive effort as it defeated Webster Thomas 6-3.
As for WG’s varsity, things started well in the morning with an 11-5 romp over Penn Yan, but the Wildcats could only manage a 7-7 tie with Top Tier. Then it ran into two of the better teams of the weekend, losing 10-3 to Timon/St. Jude and 11-5 to Atlanta.
Only two sides did better than the JV Wildcats. Timon/St. Jude dominated its four opponents (WG’s varsity, Atlanta, Liverpool and Penfield) by a combined 47-16 margin, while J-D clinched a perfect mark by edging past Fayetteville-Manlius 11-10 in a stirring final game for both sides.