You just can't hold a good goalie down. Despite not playing as well as she would have liked, Molly Wolf did not sulk when Bryn Mawr coaches Kim Simons and Wendy Kridel yanked her from the first half of an eventual 9-7 loss to Maryvale in an Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference semifinal last month.
On the contrary, when the Baltimore Messenger Player of the Year came out for the second half with the Mawrtians trailing, 6-2, she was raring to go.
Her body language spoke volumes about how, if Maryvale was going to pull off the upset, the Lions would have to work hard to leave with a victory.
With Wolf buttoning up the goal after Bryn Mawr fell behind, 9-3, the Mawrtians (15-2) closed on a 4-0 run to make a game of it with 1:28 remaining.
"If Molly was ever having a game when she was off, we would pull her, just like any other field player," Kridel said. "We'd talk to her, see what was going on, and return her to play. It always seemed to work as a catalyst to settle her down and her play improved.
While they eventually fell short, Wolf said that she had to overcome the stigma of being pulled to help her team go into rally mode.
"I knew if we were going to have a shot to win, I was going to have to get by my own insecurities," the Ruxton resident said. "My team needed me."
That's the kind of attitude — along with a very short memory — that makes her an elite stopper between the pipes and a field general when she steps out of the goal circle on a clearing play.
"Molly is a natural goalie — she is a leader, she is fearless, and she loves to win," Kridel added. "It's the perfect trifecta. When Molly was in the cage her teammates would move mountains for her, and she for them. In addition, Molly has a real love of life. She is fun, and she is funny. The girls love to have her around."
Her best games were in two completely different types of contests. One was a high-scoring battle in which the Mawrtians topped St. Stephen's & Agnes, 14-13; the other a 5-3 squeaker over St. Mary's.
Wolf, a Lutherville-Timonium and Towsontowne rec product, said that one of her main attributes was keeping the Mawrtian defenders on the same page.
"Sometimes, I had to focus on bringing in the defense when things got out of hand," she said. "My job was to settle them down after they made a mistake, or something bad happened."
Headed to Loyola University Maryland to play for coach Jen Adams, Wolf brings an impressive résumé to Evergreen — she faced 268 shots, allowed 114 goals and had 154 stops for a 57 percent save rate.
"She's an amazing goalie," said Maryvale midfield star Sam Darcangelo, who team fell to McDonogh, 12-11, in the conference final. "You couldn't just shoot one way on her — low or high. We had to move her around."