Manlius Cicero-North Syracuse's boys soccer team needed an extra four minutes and 35 seconds to break the tie and edge Fayetteville-Manlius Thursday night 2-1 in a clash of Class AA title contenders.
Off a corner kick from Austin Mizell midway through the first OT period, Liam McDonnell headed the ball past Hornet goalkeeper Jim Brady to end it.
“Set pieces - that’s where goals are scored,” C-NS head coach Mike McCaffery said. “So you've got to be dangerous on set pieces. We work on that particular one where we whip it in with a left-footer, and we happen to be in the right place at the right time.”
The Northstars got things started off 15 minutes into the contest with a goal from sophomore Lucas Roberts. Amid a cluster of chaotic headers and high kicks, Roberts collected the ball and fired a shot into the top-right corner of the net to give C-NS a 1-0 lead.
“It (the first goal) was big,” McCaffery said. “Because it’s tough to score on these guys, tough to score in soccer period. And to get on the board early was real big for us.”
The Hornets responded 15 minutes later with a goal from Tysen Tresness, who fought his way through two defenders, drew C-NS goalkeeper Morgan Miller out of the box and beamed a shot past Miller for the equalizer.
It was at that moment that both teams began playing much more physically. That physicality led to multiple free kicks and set pieces for both teams, but neither could find the touch to take the lead.
McCaffery thought this nature of the game benefited F-M because the Hornets are a much bigger team than the Northstars. With that in mind, McCaffery told his players at halftime to stand their ground and be stronger in the air.