Of all the frustrations gathered up by the Skaneateles boys soccer team in 2013, none was as vexing as the pair of narrow defeats it took to its most fervent rival.
Marcellus twice beat the Lakers in one-goal decisions, following up a narrow 1-0 decision on Sept. 19 with a 2-1 victory on the Mustangs’ home turf less than a month later.
In this rematch, the two neighbors went to the second half still 0-0, but then the Lakers got on the board in the second half with Jack Bailey’s unassisted goal.
However, the Mustangs answered, and then topped, Skaneateles with goals from Geoff Golick and Adam Molinari, with Mark Tompkins adding an assist. Billy Patrick finished with three saves, the same total as Marcellus counterpart Ian LaFever.
Back home at Hyatt Stadium Friday night, Skaneateles now looked to earn its own regular-season sweep of a different league rival, hosting Cazenovia, whom it beat 3-2 in overtime on Sept. 24 right after the first defeat to Marcellus.
But it did not quite happen, as Skaneateles lost another 2-1 decision in a game that went back and forth, neither side able to really take control.
Kevin Porter’s goal in the 24th minute gave Cazenovia a 1-0 edge. That stood up until the second half, when James Motyl took a pass from Mike Jorgensen and slipped a shot past Garrett Clabeaux to pull Skaneateles even, 1-1.
Going into the homestretch, Skaneateles kept applying pressure, but Clabeaux, with eight saves, prevented the host Lakers from moving in front, and Cazenovia got the game-winner when Porter found the net again with eight minutes to play in regulation.
These losses dropped Skaneateles’ record to 9-7, which was still plenty good enough for an appearance in the Section III Class B playoffs. With the no. 7 seed, the Lakers host no. 10 seed Lowville in the opening round Tuesday night, looking to advance to the quarterfinals against no. 2 seed Clinton on Saturday afternoon.