Caz boys lacrosse handles CBA in opener

Lakers commence defense of state Class C title

— No Connor Cannizzaro or Ryan Cook, no Brad Nardella or Joe Colligan - and at least for the moment, still no problem for the Cazenovia boys lacrosse team as the pursuit of another state Class C championship is underway.

The Lakers ventured to Alibrandi Stadium Friday night to start the 2014 season against a fellow contender, Christian Brothers Academy, and rode a fast start all the way to a comfortable 16-8 victory over the Brothers.

Once the snow started to melt, the Lakers got out of the gymnasium and were able to find some practice time across town at Cazenovia College, along with Morrisville State, and had an impressive showing against long-time Class A power Fayetteville-Manlius in a scrimmage earlier in the week.

Thus, Cazenovia had lots of time to work with its new lineup, especially up front, where the massive production brought forth by Cannizzaro and Cook during that run to the 2013 state title would, with most teams, be impossible to replace.

But it didn't take long for the Lakers to prove, at least to CBA, that it could still attack at will. Dominating in the face-off X thanks to returning senior Henry Mann, Cazenovia held the ball much of the first quarter and bolted out to a 4-0 lead before the Brothers even got a possession.

Were it not for a series of shots sailing wide and others stopped by CBA goalie Andrew Kocsc, it may have turned more lopsided. Still, the Brothers hung in there, playing on even terms with Cazenovia for a large portion of the half.

After Jack Zerillo's goal cut the Lakers' margin to 8-4, P.J. Brown answered 35 seconds later, and Derek White added a goal a minute later, helping Cazenovia take a 10-4 lead to halftime.

Cole Willard, who scored twice in the first half, would add to that total in the last two periods as Cazenovia got away. Assuming the goal-scoring role that Cook held the previous two seasons, Willard found the net three more times to give him five for the night, plus a pair of assists.

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