Starting on Tuesday night, when Fayetteville-Manlius pays a visit to Bragman Stadium, the Cicero-North Syracuse boys lacrosse team will get a good idea of where it stands.
Of course, facing a traditional power such as the Hornets is made more palpable by the way the Northstars started its 2014 season. As bad weather forced all sorts of schedule adjustments elsewhere, C-NS took the field twice last week against Section IV opponents – and beat them both with ease.
Having lost to Baldwinsville in last year’s Section III Class A quarterfinals, C-NS got underway last Thursday night, at Binghamton, where it rolled to a 12-4 victory over the Patriots.
They were tied, 2-2, through one quarter, but over the course of the next two periods the Northstars’ defense kept Binghamton off the board, while a steady attack produced six unanswered goals and an 8-2 lead that proved insurmountable.
Zach Debottis had a role in more than half of C-NS’s scoring plays, managing three goals and four assists. Eric Sauer scored twice, contributing three assists, while Tom Koster got two goals and two assists.
Not far behind them, Tyler Griffo had a goal and two assists. Andrew Burns contributed one goal and one assist as Alex Beck also found the net. Bryan Schenk was superb in the net, recording 18 saves before he exited in the fourth quarter.
Back home on Saturday afternoon, C-NS faced Union-Endicott, and nearly matched its exact result from Binghamton, rolling past the Tigers 12-3.
This time, the Northstars’ defense limited its opponent to one goal in the first half. It allowed C-NS to be patient on the other end until a 4-1 push through the third quarter helped put things out of U-E’s reach.
Sauer, Koster and Griffo each managed three-goal hat tricks. Burns, Nick Mirizio and Ryan Waldron finished with one goal and one assist apiece as Ozzy Crisalli earned his first assist of the season.
Right after the F-M game, C-NS will meet archrival Liverpool, who has to open its season on Tuesday at defending sectional champion West Genesee and, after facing the Northstars, must host Class C contender Marcellus on Saturday night.