Skan volleyball

The Lakers' Jessica Patalino, left, and Aidan Bennett protect the net against Mexico Tuesday at Skaneateles High School. 

Justin Ritzel, The Citizen

SKANEATELES — As the most important time of the season nears, the Lakers didn't mess around in a match where they entered as the superior team.

The Skaneateles volleyball team swept Mexico 3-0 in a match Tuesday at Skaneateles High School. The Lakers won by set scores of 25-16, 25-14, 25-20.

Facing a team that has struggled this season — Mexico entered the contest 3-12 on the season — it was important for Skaneateles to handle its business against a lesser opponent. After a slow start where the Lakers struggled with serves, it was smooth sailing the rest of the way.

"We started the game off a little rough. Of the first eight points they got, I think six came from missed serves," Skaneateles coach Dan Mulroy said. "We can't do that here or against other teams. We made it a goal to go the rest of the game without any missed serves. They did a good job."

Cassidy Pitman filled the stat sheet with six aces, three kills and 11 assists for the Lakers, while Maeve Canty and Jessica Patalino were both credited with six kills apiece. Karah Blair finished with a team-high 12 digs.

Pitman's execution was critical for the Lakers in the second frame — her string of successful points put the Tigers in a hole they couldn't climb out of.

"Cassidy Pitman definitely had a nice performance," Mulroy said. "She's a captain and a senior. We know that we go by how she does. She had a great game. Also our young girls ... we have 10 seniors but the four non-seniors had a good game led by Maeve Canty and Jessica Patalino."

Skaneateles (9-2) has four more matches during the regular season before sectionals begin. The Lakers' remaining schedule includes matchups with Phoenix, Jamesville-DeWitt, Westhill and Homer.

With their record, the Lakers should cruise to a high seed for sectional play where Mulroy believes another matchup with Solvay awaits. Skaneateles has met the Bearcats in sectionals each of the past two seasons.

Earlier in October, the Lakers traveled to Solvay and lost in four sets. It was the first time in six meetings between the two teams that the matchup didn't extend to a full five sets.

"The way it might shake out now, we know we're probably playing Solvay again," Mulroy said. "We've played them in the two other years that I've been here so it's only fitting that we'd play Solvay again. We lost a pretty tough one at Solvay, so I know I'm anxious and the girls are anxious to get another crack at them. We're looking forward to that matchup."

Sports writer Justin Ritzel can be reached at 282-2257 or at justin.ritzel@lee.net. Follow him on Twitter @CitizenRitz.

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