Marcellus Just by the numbers, the Skaneateles girls lacrosse team began its 2014 season Tuesday night by hammering Marcellus 18-8 in the first meeting between the rivals since last May's Section III Class C final at the Carrier Dome.
However, the real work for the Lakers commenced on June 8, 2013, moments after it lost, 15-6, to Mount Sinai in the state title game at SUNY-Cortland.
Right there, a large cast of Skaneateles players that would return for this season began the process of training and preparation, squarely focused on getting back to that same Cortland turf this June and finishing on top.
A tough set of scrimmages late in March, including a trip to Wilton, Conn., to play top teams from across the Northeast, preceded the opener, where Marcellus, who had rolled past Jamesville-DeWitt 18-7 in its March 28 opener, awaited.
The Mustangs also have a solid core of returning players, including Grace Nolan, Grace Hunt, Ally Burrows and Nicole Cerrone. And it grabbed an early 2-1 lead on Skaneateles on goals from Burrows and Hunt just 43 seconds apart.
After that, though, it was all Lakers. Molly Wood and Alana Navaroli controlled the draw circle, giving Skaneateles a series of possessions, and it took full advantage, pouring in six unanswered goals in a span of slightly more than three minutes.
Two of those goals, by Wood and Navaroli, were nine seconds apart. Hannah Powers also scored twice, with Kyla Sears and Natalie Roche also finding the net as Skaneateles rushed to a 7-2 lead.
Though the Lakers slowed down for a while, it closed the first half with another decisive rush. Back-to-back goals from Wood, along with goals from Navaroli and Sears just before the horn, stretched out the Skaneateles lead to 12-3 by halftime.
Not letting up, Skaneateles made it 18-4 at one point late in the second half before head coach Bridget Marquardt pulled the starters, knowing that bigger challenges (along with a rematch with Marcellus on May 7) still loomed ahead.