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Fast start pushes Skaneateles boys soccer past VVS to open sectionals

October 20, 2016

SKANEATELES — The Lakers are happy to advance, but their head coach believes a better effort will be needed if another sectional title is in their future.

Skaneateles defeated Vernon-Verona-Sherrill 3-0 in the opening round of the Section III, Class B boys soccer playoffs Wednesday at Skaneateles High School. The Lakers scored all three of their goals in the first half, which included one tally a mere 14 seconds into the contest.

“It’s a win which is good … you win and advance, but I thought we played subpar in the second half,” Skaneateles coach Aaron Moss said. “We had an opportunity to play a better second half than we did in the first, and we didn’t. It’s frustrating for a coach to have guys not take the opportunity to get better in a game situation. We were hoping for more.

Reggie Buell, Matt Benson and Jeff Palmer each contributed one goal for the Lakers, with Benson and Gabe Konieczny adding an assist apiece. Luke Peterson made one save for the shutout.

It took the Lakers 14 seconds to break open the scoring. Buell accepted a pass from Benson, caught the Red Devils’ defense out of position and buried the first score of the game from in close.

A tick over four minutes passed before Skaneateles added some insurance, with Benson on the finishing end, to go ahead 2-0. Palmer added on a third tally to send the Lakers into halftime up in commanding fashion.

Skaneateles was held off the scoreboard in the second half, despite numerous chances that included a header off the post from Christian Daley. Still, Moss felt there is room for improvement.

“We came right out and it was almost over before it started,” Moss said. “We score in 14 seconds, and the second one wasn’t too far after that. That was good, and then we created some other chances but you’ve got to play 80 minutes and I don’t think we played 80 tonight.”

The Lakers (11-3-3) will face sixth-seeded Watertown IHC in the quarterfinals on Saturday.

“We want to be mentally focused for 80 minutes,” Moss said. “There was some mental things we didn’t do in the second half. Physically, we can play, run fast and those types of things. We want 80 minutes of mental focus. We set bars here that are really high and push them to it.”