LINCOLNDALE — Frankie Fusco came flying back into play after serving a penalty in the closing minutes of the opening half, collected a pass as he crossed into the box and promptly ended any hope Somers had of stealing the momentum.
It’s almost unfair to give that kind of a player a running start.
“He just really likes to run down the middle of the field, and it doesn’t matter if you hit Frankie or not,” Yorktown attackman Conor Gately said. “He gets up smiling. That’s what we were missing, that guy who can take a hit and score.”
Fusco was emotionally charged from the start Thursday and threw in six goals to lead the Cornhuskers to a 16-9 win at Somers. He was constantly around the ball. And when the opportunity to play the body was there, Fusco created some contact.
He moved to middie four games ago when Brian Prestreau went down with an injury, and has made a lasting impression.
“They like me up there now,” Fusco said. “I guess it gives me a little more room to run. I do like playing attack, but I’ll do what’s best for the team. I love hitting people, it’s a huge adrenaline rush. You have to play with emotion and put your body into it.”
Yorktown (8-2) was looking to send a message, and it came through loud and clear.
Fusco sparked the offense when he short-hopped Tuskers goalie Chris Cousin in the opening minutes. Brian Quigley made it 2-0 in a hurry. The Tuskers were overwhelmed at the faceoff X all night and struggled to get a touch early on.
Anthony Carpenter did score a man-up goal, but it provided only a brief respite.
Gately set up Joey Raniolo, then used the most lethal hands and feet in Section 1 to give Yorktown a 5-1 cushion. The agile playmaker had four assists.
The intensity never dropped.
“We all wanted to show (the win against) Darien wasn’t a fluke,” Gately said. “We think we’re the best team in the section, but we’re going one game at a time. Mahopac is next, so hopefully we keep rolling.”
Somers (7-4) never recovered from the start.
“Oh my God,” Anthony Carpenter said. “We couldn’t win a faceoff and they probably had the ball 90 percent of the time. It’s tough to win without the ball. Offensively, they’re so explosive. They have so many weapons. They are the total package.”
It was more than an uphill battle.
Danny Manning and Luke Palmadesso have come a long way at the faceoff X, and the ’Huskers are going to be awfully difficult to deal with if they keep winning possession after possession.
Carpenter got a transition goal to make it 5-2, but Gately answered. Chris Marasco scored a man-up goal with 4:05 to play in the first half, but Fusco answered. Then Gately scored again. Then Fusco scored again and again.
At the intermission, Yorktown was in front 10-3.
“I wouldn’t put us down as the best team in the section,” said Fusco, who was singing a different tune in the pregame huddle. “But we like to come out firing, come out screaming, and bring all that right into the game.”