HOMER — The Homer boys lacrosse team nearly let a six-goal lead with 15 minutes to go completely evaporate, but the Trojans held on for an 11-8 victory over the Skaneateles Lakers Tuesday night at Homer High.
Jake Calabro was once again the leading scorer for the Trojans with five goals, and was aided by Hunter Riehlman (two goals), Jared Matthews (one goal, three assists), Ben Morenus (one goal, two assists), Reid Partis and Logan Swartz (goal each).
The Lakers’ offense was paced by Colin Morrisey (three goals), Grayson Brunelle (three goals) and Sean Kerwick (two goals).
Up 9-3 with about three minutes left in the third quarter, the Trojans started to let things slip away with two slashing penalties that paid immediate dividends for the Lakers in the form of three goals to cut the deficit to 9-6 going into the final frame.
When penalties weren’t holding back the Trojans, ground balls were. The Lakers won 21 ground balls to the Trojans 13, including a 9-6 edge in the second half. While the Trojans’ defense was stout, their inability to scoop up ground balls gave the Lakers extra possessions, which led to two more fourth quarter goals that made it a one-goal game with 6:30 left.
“We did a great job in the first half and early in the third. We were winning faceoffs, (Perks) was slamming the door on them and we played good fundamental defense. Then there was a little string there where we couldn’t come up with a ground ball, particularly in traffic. We played great defense and put the ball on the ground, and they’d get a second or third opportunity because we didn’t come up with that ground ball… Their GB work was impressive, ours not so much.”
What gave the Trojans the ability to hang on for the win was Laker penalties. The Lakers were called for nine of them, including four in the span of 4:01 in the fourth quarter that gave them the space to pad the lead back up to three goals.
Two of the Lakers’ penalties were locked in unsportsmanlike conduct calls, but the Trojans were never called for such a foul despite the increasing physicality and tension as the game progressed.
“I’m really proud of the kids. We faced a little adversity tonight. (Skaneateles is) a well-coached and a very good team. They pushed us unlike some of the teams we’ve played so far, and to our kids’ credit, they kept their heads. We took more penalties in the second half than I would have liked, but no unsportsmanlikes, and that was an important part of being able to pull this thing out at the end.”
Trojans goalie Collin Perks made 10 saves, including one where he was off his crease and dove backwards with his arms and stick outstretched to deflect the ball over the end line.
The Trojans now stand at 6-0. When asked what’s been clicking the most that’s allowed them to go on this winning streak, Cottrell said it’s because they have “21 kids who come to work every single day. They listen, they’re trying to do what we’re asking them to do, and we keep growing as a team, and hopefully we’ll continue to do that.”
The Trojans are back in action at 6 p.m. Thursday when they visit Tully.
Cortland 9, Jamesville-DeWitt 5
The Purple Tigers never trailed in a rematch of Monday’s thriller.
Max Gambitta hit a home run and Caden Albright had four RBI, while Tyler Blake pitched 4 1/3 innings with 10 strikeouts and Adam Minnard pitched the final 2 2/3 innings for the save.
Waverly 7, Dryden 6
Waverly scored three runs in the top of the seventh to erase a 5-4 deficit, and the Lions could only muster one run in the bottom half before Brady Blarrett shut the door for the win.
Bradley Perry and Nathaniel Poole each hit a home run for the Lions. Perry also threw 6 2/3 innings on the mound, striking out eight.
Union Springs 19, Marathon 2
Union Springs’s Ryan Bailey pitched a gem with 17 strikeouts in seven innings while allowing just three hits and one walk.
Ian Gacek went 1-for-2 with a double, stolen base and run scored and Zach Birdsall went 1-for-3 with an RBI and a run for the Olympians.
DeRuyter 13, Cincinnatus 3
Kelsey Brown scattered five hits and five walks while striking out eight to get the complete game victory for the Rockets.
Graycee Forrest went 2-for-3 with a run and Brooke Judson and Abriana Whitt each scored three runs.
Dryden 7, Port Byron 5
The Lions improved to 3-2 thanks to a six-run first inning and the pitching of Morgan Best and Kahlen Cornell, who combined for six strikeouts. Cassie Seng fueled the Lions offense with a hit and three steals.
Union Springs 185, Marathon 195
Luke Parker’s 42 and Joey Sylvester’s 45 allowed Union Springs to squeak past Marathon (3-4).
Joey Hulbert (47), Braeden Morrison (49) and Bryce Hartman (49) were the leaders for the Olympians.
Dryden 214, Moravia 225
Connor Smith was far and away the best golfer in this match, posting a 39, while Patrick O’Neill and Zack Wilson were each in the 40s. No Moravia golfer was below 51.
Central Square 7, Cortland 0
Mike Guido put up the best result for the Purple Tigers, falling 6-2, 6-3 to Ethan Wells. All other games were 6-0 or 6-1 Central Square.