Chapelgate Christian Academy solidified its hold on first place in its league by defeating county rival, Glenelg Country School, 3-0, in a conference game Wednesday, Sept. 28.
Lydia Frierson scored twice, and Kristin Thomas got the other goal to help extend Chapelgate's win streak to five games.
Frierson scored the game's first goal. Her icebreaker came about 20 minutes into the game. "It wasn't pretty," she said of her goal. "I just followed the ball after someone shot and put it."
The Yellowjackets, 7-1 overall, are now 3-0 in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland's C Conference and tied with Park School.
Glenelg Country is 1-2, both overall and in the conference, and in sixth place in the nine-team league.
Chapelgate's speed and quickness to the ball and its strong defense kept Glenelg Country off the scoreboard.
"I think we held them well," said Chapelgate's senior sweeper Amarachi Uzosike. "It was important to keep up with them. The times they penetrated it was through fast breaks and it was never them dribbling all the way inside. So we had to keep up with them when they made fast breaks and kick it outside."
Chloe Lewis and Megan Steeley, a freshman making her first start, played well defensively for Glenelg Country, holding the normally high-scoring team well below its average of more than six goals a game.
But the Dragons made a defensive mistake about 12 minutes into the second half and it cost them another goal.
"They kicked their goal kick right to me," said Thomas, who was about 18 yards out and got a good shot on the goal. "When you give up a goal like that, it really shuts you down."
Frierson's second goal of the game came about 25 minutes into the second half. She settled the ball about 35 yards out and dribbled through the defense to get well inside the 18-yard box. Glenelg Country's keeper, Shayna Keller, who had eight saves for the day, got a left hand on the shot and deflected it, but the ball landed in the lower right corner of the net.
Chapelgate won the conference championship last year, and the opportunity to repeat drives the team, said Molly Carlson, a midfielder who won the 50-50 balls. "We have that experience behind us. It pushes us because every team knows we won that game last year so we have to come out strong.
"Every game is a chance to learn," she added.
Glenelg Country lost to Chapelgate last year, but this is a different team, said the Dragons.
"We lost so badly last year," said Ninah Dawson. "But this is a whole new team, all new players. I think they (Chapelgate) underestimated our abilities."
"We have more talent than we've had in the history of our girls soccer team," said Tala Ahmadi. "When we see them again (in the playoffs), I think we'll all have the vengeance to beat them."
Christy Mink, in her fourth season as Glenelg Country's coach, noted the improvement in the five-year old program. In her first year, the team did not win in 13 games and scored one goal. Last year, the team was 4-7 and scored 22 goals. The Dragons have never advanced beyond the first round of the playoffs.
"Today we lacked the fire the girls have demonstrated this season," she said. "With the fire, the girls would be more of an offensive threat. I hope this game proves to them they are a strong team and can be contenders."