Hours earlier, Westhill found itself at the Sean Goggin Sports Complex in Cazenovia, staring right at Cazenovia, who had backed up its no. 6 state Class C ranking last Tuesday with an impressive 12-5 victory over a CBA side that, previously, had not scored less than 14 goals in any previous game.
It was the task of both sides to avoid letdowns from their big Tuesday efforts, and the Warriors benefited from this at the outset, holding the potent Cazenovia attack without a goal in the first quarter. But the Lakers were just as stingy, and when it got on the board in the second period, it managed to pull ahead of Westhill, 3-2, by the time they reached the break.
Now it was the Warriors' turn to rally, pulling even, 6-6, in the third quarter, and exchanging with Cazenovia throughout a tense final period. A key to Westhill's success was the way defenders Pete Valenti, Zach Sizing and Franco Tangredi worked in front of goalie Jack Sweeney, who would finish with 16 saves.
Together, Westhill held Cazenovia's reigining Central New York Player of the Year, Connor Cannizzaro, to two goals, and even though Ryan Cook scored four times, Cazenovia could not avoid a 7-7 tie and a trip to overtime.
Just 1:25 into the OT period, Ryan Suddaby found a gap and fired a shot past Cazenovia goalie Trevor Cross to give Westhill the victory. It was Suddaby's third goal of the day, matching the hat trick from teammate Jack Centore, while Luke Longo managed a goal and two assists. Ryan Zimmerman also scored as Mark Purcell and Richie Easterly earned one assist apiece.
Having improved to 10-2 on the season, the Warriors should move up from its no. 19 state Class C ranking, and Marcellus moved to 10-3 with its win over Skaneateles. And they both take on CBA next week - Westhill on Tuesday night, followed by Marcellus on Thursday.