Skaneateles Just about everyone walked out of Thursday night's girls basketball showdown between Westhill and Skaneateles in a positive mood.
The Warriors, 13-0 and no. 2 in the state Class B rankings, were pleased because it had prevailed 54-50 to keep that mark perfect, getting contributions from sources both expected and unexpected.
Yet the Lakers(9-4) had to feel quite good, too, because it had shown that, at its best, it could stay right with any opponent, even one as formidable as Westhill.
Everyone on the Skaneateles side remembered how Westhill beat them 66-45 on Dec. 13, and right from the start it was clear that the rematch would not be as one-sided.
Elizabeth Lane, coming off her worst showing of the season (just two points in a 56-43 loss to Marcellus on Tuesday night), notched six consecutive points, including a steal and lay-up, as part of a 12-0 first-quarter outburst by the Lakers.
Unfazed, Westhill countered with its own 11-0 run to catch up early in the second period. Lane had 10 first-half points to push the Lakers back in front 22-18, but the Warriors closed the half with a 7-2 burst to edge into a 25-24 lead at the break.
Skaneateles was determined to contain Westhill's main trio of Anna Ross, Sam Peebles and Maggie Tripodi, and did a decent job in the opening half. But in doing so, the Lakers left open shots to senior Kelly Mascari, who notched nine of her 14 points in the second quarter.
"Kelly is a great scorer and can do all the little things well," said Westhill head coach Sue Ludwig.
As the third period started, the Lakers shifted its attack outside. Back-to-back 3-pointers from Brittany Welch and Nicole Beatson snatched the lead back, 30-29, the start of a series of spurts.
Westhill, holding the Lakers without a field goal for nearly five minutes, made a 7-0 push. Skaneateles didn't blink, countering with a 10-0 run, with four points apiece from Lane and Joanna Dobrovosky, and gained a 40-36 edge early in the fourth quarter.