Fifth-ranked Bryn Mawr had just one plan for yesterday's showdown with No. 7 Friends -- keep the Quakers' attack away from backup goalie Lisa Parks.
Parks, a midfielder, had to step in for starter Ellen Phillips, who got sick earlier in the week and missed a couple days of practice. Because Parks had little experience in the cage, her defense-minded teammates took over.
As a result, Parks never touched the ball as the visiting Mawrtians (3-0) made an early 1-0 lead stand up in the Association of Independent Schools A Division nonleague game.
The Mawrtians never let down on defense even when Phillips took over in the second half, and Friends (2-1) never managed a single shot on goal.
But the Mawrtians were most impressive in the first half when they held the Quakers out of their circle except on two occasions.
"We went in there right from the start with the idea to keep it up at Friends' end, so Lisa didn't have to worry about it," said Mawrtians' defender Gailor Large. "She was very nervous before the game."
Led by All-Metro link Emily Hickman, backs Large and Rachel Arnot and sweeper Janice Kim, the Mawrtians let almost nothing past them in the first half.
All that defensive intensity also helped put the Mawrtians on the board less than five minutes into the game.
On their first surge into the Quakers' circle, Robin MacColl took a pass out from Kim Smith and nailed it into the far corner of the cage from about five yards.
In the second half, the Quakers had four penalty corners in the first 10 minutes, but couldn't convert any of them. The Mawrtians always seemed a step ahead on the corners.
"It was a lack of intensity on our part," said Friends midfielder Emily Santos.
were playing really lethargic and we weren't flashing to the ball like we should have been. We just seemed to be standing back and letting Bryn Mawr do what they wanted to do."
After those early corners, Friends didn't come close again. Bryn Mawr, however, did with six penalty corners and five shots. Quakers goalie Ellen Marrow had a couple of nice saves to keep the margin at one goal.