UNIONDALE, N.Y. The Yorktown High boys lacrosse team was watching the tape of its 2011 state semifinal against Garden City when the players noticed it.
"We were up, 3-0, and then we made a few mistakes," senior Conor Gately said. "We gave them two open-net goals. Coach always tells us those little mistakes make the difference."
Garden City went on to beat Yorktown. But Yorktown is hoping to reverse the final outcome Wednesday, when the teams play a rematch in a state semifinal at 8 p.m. at Hofstra University.
The winner moves into the state final Saturday at 4 p.m. at Middletown High School, where it will play the victor of Jamesville-DeWitt (Section 3) vs. Irondequoit (Section 5).
Last year, Yorktown jumped out with the first three goals of the game, but Garden City rallied to even the score, 6-6, at halftime. The Cornhuskers have learned from their performance last year and are hoping to improve on it, Gately said.
Yorktown comes in having once again played a difficult schedule, facing some of the top teams from Long Island and Connecticut. Playing high-caliber competition has prepared Yorktown, he said.
"Having played our schedule is tremendous because it's like playing a state semifinal each time we play one of the top teams," Gately said. "It also has helped build up our confidence. In order to be the best, you have to beat the best."
Garden City enters the game undefeated, but that does not intimidate Yorktown.
"I think we match up really well against Garden City," Gately said. "Even though they are undefeated, we are very confident going in. We know they are confident, but we feel we are battle-tested.
"We want to get all the ground balls, avoid mistakes and play our game for a full 48 minutes."
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