Cazenovia Rain flew sideways, wind howled and the Cazenovia boys lacrosse team found itself in a serious crisis, something that seemed hard to imagine when it led Christian Brothers Academy by five goals late in the first half of Tuesday night's showdown at the Sean Googin Sports Complex.
That entire lead vanished, and the unbeaten, state no. 1-ranked Lakers trailed, a situation it had rarely faced all season. But it got off the mat, tied the game by the fourth quarter and proceeded to shut out the Brothers the rest of the way to pull out a memorable 12-10 victory.
One thing was clear from this wild and exciting game - CBA in no way resembled the uncertain side that Cazenovia had dismissed 16-8 in the March 28 season opener at Alibrandi Stadium. A six-game win streak had pushed the Brothers to the no. 12 state Class C ranking, and it was dead-set on letting Cazenovia know just how much things had changed.
A steady drizzle and breezes that topped 20 miles per hour accompanied the two sides as they took the field, and at first it looked like a blowout again.
Cole Willard and Henry Mann scored 17 seconds apart to get the Lakers started. Mann, again having his way in the face-off circle, fed Derek White for another goal, and when Willard and P.J. Brown scored in a 25-second span late in the first quarter, the Lakers had a 5-0 edge.
But in its first show of resilience, CBA sprung to life. Jack Zerillo scored twice and Jack Jeschke found the net, all in less than a minute, cutting the margin to 5-3 as the opening period ended.
Having burned the Brothers for five goals and two assists in that first meeting, Willard frolicked again in the first half of the rematch, getting his third and fourth goals before Jake Lewis converted at the 8:53 mark of the second quarter.