continued Instead of a confidence-boosting victory, though, Skaneateles got a jolt early in the second half from which it could not fully recover, falling to Cazenovia by that same 2-1 margin.
From that first meeting, Cazenovia’s defense had learned how to deal with the quick Skaneateles attackers. Utilizing six different back-line players, it blocked every attack lane, and when the ball got close, they quickly passed to teammates, rather than just randomly kick the ball away.
Through a scoreless first half, that pattern remained the same. Then the Skaneateles defense committed a costly turnover and, 2:27 into the second half, Audrey Burbidge launched a perfect 25-yard shot that flew past Kush into the top left corner of the net.
Before Skaneateles could recover, Burbidge broke open again three minutes later, and taking a nice pass from Hannah Rousell, beat the defenders and converted again, and the host Lakers found itself in a 2-0 hole.
Forced to pick up the tempo, Skaneateles ran into that same defensive quicksand that Cazenovia had put together, which nearly led to a shutout.
Despite this, with 4:05 left, Molly Wood flicked home Catie Woodruff’s cross, cutting the margin to one, and Skaneateles made an all-out push in the remaining minutes, but was unable to catch up.
The only good part for Skaneateles (10-2-1) is that its remaining regular-season schedule is not daunting, as it hosts Altmar-Parish-Williamstown on Tuesday before finishing with trips to Hannibal on Thursday and Jordan-Elbridge on Oct. 17, so there’s ample time to practice, recuperate and work on all phases of the game before the start of the sectional tournament.