No. 5 Maryvale made short work of Roland Park Country School in chilly Brooklandville on Thursday, soundly beating the unranked Reds, 18-11.
The Lions jumped out to a 7-1 advantage in the first nine minutes and were never seriously threatened in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference game.
Trailing, 3-0, sophomore midfielder Francesca Whitehurst scored on a fastbreak off the draw for the Reds before a 4-0 retort by Maryvale dimmed any hopes of a comeback.
Sophomore midfielder Miranda Ibello scored twice while seniors Amanda Bochniak and Emma Tizzard notched the other goals during the Lions' earl;y spurt.
"They go to goal hard," Roland Park coach Kristin Nicolini said. "They got up on us, and it's hard to come back from that"
The Reds (2-5, 1-3 conference) did bounce back with goals of their own by Whitehurst and senior attacker Emma Guarino, but never came closer than a five-goal deficit the rest of the way.
And that was puzzling to Nicolini, who said her team played much better in a 14-12 loss to No. 15 Notre Dame Prep on Tuesday.
"We have talent," Nicolini added. "We're just trying to grow as a team. It's just taking a little longer than we hoped."
Maryvale (5-1, 3-1), on the other hand, was clicking on offense.
Showing an array of tricky inside rolls and an ability to find cutters streaking free through the 8-meter arc, the Lions put a ton of pressure on Roland Park goalies Riley Brager and Rachel Braverman with close-range shots.
Still smarting from a 9-8 loss to St. Paul's School for Girls last week, Maryvale was much more aggressive with the ball than they were against the surprising Gators.
"We learned a lot from the St. Paul's game," Maryvale coach Jessica Randisi said. "We learned you have to play a full 50 minutes of lacrosse, so a loss isn't always a bad thing."
For the Reds, scoring goals has not been as big a problem as stopping opponents from doing the same.
Nicolini said that losing to an opponent with such a powerful offense may not be a reason to despair.
"It may shake out that they (the Lions) end up as a top-three team," she said. "So, it's almost better to lose a game that's not that close. They're hard to stop.'
Goals: (RP)-Hauser 1, Quinn 1, Whitehurst 3, Guarino 2, Finney 2, Brager 2 (M)-Tizzard 3, Bochniak 4, Hesselbein 4, McWright 1, Ibello 4, Blood 2
Assists: (RP)-Whitehurst 1, deMuth 2, Guarino 1 (M) Bochniak (4), Crocetti 1, Ibello 3
Saves: (RP) Brager 4, Braverman 2 (M) Federico 9
Half: 11-6, M