Camillus At this early point in the season, the Baldwinsville boys lacrosse team’s biggest issue is an inability to find the net when doing so could lead to some big victories.
The Bees managed just five goals (one in the second half) during a 13-5 defeat to reigning state Class C champion Cazenovia on April 5, and those struggles continued Tuesday night, at West Genesee, where plenty of opportunities were missed in an 8-5 defeat to the Wildcats.
These same two teams had met in last May’s Section III Class A semifinal, with B’ville leading late in the third quarter before WG came back and, with a goal in the waning seconds, pulled it out 9-8, eventually claiming yet another sectional title and advancing all the way to the state finals.
Motivated to settle the score with the Wildcats, the Bees played a strong first quarter, forcing WG into turnovers and igniting plenty of attacks. Yet it could not get the ball past Matt Koziol, except for Steve Petrelli’s goal, and when David Procopio answered late in the period, it was 1-1.
Defenses ruled again in the second quarter, as chances were missed on both ends. Only WG’s Matt Milne found the net, so at the half B’ville stared at a 2-1 deficit.
When Petrelli’s second goal tied it again, 2-2, early in the third quarter, Tyler Brown answered, putting WG in front for good. The Wildcats stretched the lead out to 5-2, only to see the Bees score twice in 14 seconds to pull within one before Milne’s third goal restored the margin to 6-4 with one period left.
That was as close as B’ville would get in the final period. Petrelli found the net again to make it 7-5, but WG’s defense, anchored by Nick Mellen, Alex Tripodi and Jake McCarthy, made key stops down the stretch to preserve the lead.
All told, Koziol stopped 16 of the 21 shots he faced, with only Petrelli, Kyle Akers and Kyle Terrell getting goals for B’ville. Another key to the outcome was B’ville claiming just two of 11 face-offs in the second half.
This was B’ville’s only game of the week, as it returns early next week to face Corcoran, whose strong start included a last-second, 8-7 win over previously unbeaten Cicero-North Syracuse on Tuesday. The Bees also host Central Square on April 17 at 11 a.m.