Absent from game action for more than two weeks following wins over Auburn and Marcellus, the Fayetteville-Manlius boys lacrosse team had a lot of time to practice, but may have paid for that long rest.
For when the Hornets’ 12-day break ended with last Thursday night’s visit to West Genesee, it took too long for F-M to find its game rhythm, and it could not overcome a rough second quarter in an 11-8 defeat to the Wildcats.
Of course, payback was also a factor. WG remembered how the Hornets beat them in last year’s Section III Class A semifinal, and were eager to get back at its long-time rivals in green and white.
While F-M shook off its competitive rust, the Wildcats pounced, holding them to one goal in the first quarter and then taking charge in the second period thanks to a 6-2 outburst.
Leading 8-3 at the break, WG could withstand it when F-M’s attack came to life in the third quarter. Despite seeing most of the lead disappear, the Wildcats absorbed it and, still up 9-7 going to the final period, it played strong defense to make sure it stayed on top.
F-M only had two players score more than once as Donovan Welsh finished with three goals and one assist and Nick Papa get two goals. Tommy Ryu, Mac Fish and James Rettinger had one goal apiece as WG’s young goalie, Nick Staudt, continued to get comfortable in his high-pressure role, recording 10 saves.
For the victorious Wildcats, Jay Considine scored three times to lead a nicely-balanced WG attack that saw Kevin Sheehan get two goals and two assists and Max Rosa earn two goals and one assist. Ryan Smith contributed a goal and assist as Jack Howes, Marcus Hudgins and Noah Sabatino also found the net.
Ahead of another key showdown on Tuesday against Baldwinsville, the Hornets did not look past Saturday’s game against LaFayette, rolling past the Lancers 17-4 as it steadily gained control in the first half and then erased any doubts with a 7-1 spurt during the third quarter.
Welsh and Fish each scored four times, with Welsh gaining four assists and Fish three assists. Ryan Cicci and Luke Burnam had two assists apiece as Burnam joined Luke Hamel, Teddy Wells, Tom Angelicola, Chris Lubrino, Brett Barlow and Zach VanValkenburgh in earning single goals. Hamel and Kyle Gilroy picked up assists.
The B’ville game only begins a tough, busy week where F-M also hosts Liverpool on Thursday and visits Skaneateles on Saturday afternoon.