All of a sudden, the Skaneateles girls ice hockey team, mostly boosted by a stingy defense, is in charge of the Section III division race.
Confirmation of that fact was offered in last Wednesday’s game at Oswego, where the Lakers took over in the game’s latter stages and put together a 2-0 victory over the Buccaneers.
Skaneateles was coming off a 1-0 shutout of Albany Academy on Jan. 13, and stayed patient with Oswego through a scoreless first period, waiting for the right moment to strike.
Then, in the second period, the Lakers moved out in front, tacking on an insurance goal in the final period, all while the back line stifled any sort of answer from the Bucs, holding them to 12 shots, each of them grabbed by Amanda Lupo.
Morgan Matthews and Paige Postalwait both had single goals, while Claire Michel earned an assist. Oswego goalie Maddie Whalen made 26 saves.
A weekend of home games at Austin Park Pavilion began Friday, when Skaneateles hosted second-place Ithaca and the shutout streak continued, the Lakers squeaking out another 1-0 decision.
For two periods, both the Lakers and Little Red could not find the net. With the tension building, Skaneateles picked up its attack and, in the third period, broke through as Lynn Copeland, taking passes from Samantha Kawesjza and Marykate McHale, put in the go-ahead goal.
Again, the Lakers’ defense proved superb, turning away every Ithaca chance, though Lupo was a bit busier as she picked up 23 saves for her latest shutout.
Finally, the win streak, and the shutout streak, would halt Saturday as Beekmantown defeated the Lakers in a 3-1 decision.
A goal in the first period got Beekmantown out in front, 1-0. Though Riley Donahue converted in the second period off a feed from Allison Weiss, the visitors added to its margin, overcoming Lupo’s 18 saves.
Skaneateles would get one more chance to play at home Monday, against Potsdam, before a series of road games late in the week, including a rematch with Ithaca and trips to Saranac Lake and St. Lawrence.