From the start of Friday afternoon's Bryn Mawr-Notre Dame Prep girls lacrosse game, Mawrtians' goalie Molly Wolf felt she was in a goalies' duel.
Wolf and NDP goalie Mary-Sean Wilcox have known each other since the fifth grade and play on the same club team. Each started off the game hot, but in the end Wolf made the only save in overtime to preserve an 8-7 victory for the No. 2 Mawrtians.
The No. 7 Blazers put a lot more pressure on Wolf than the visiting Mawrtians did on Wilcox, who made six terrific saves against 13 shots on goal. Wolf faced 25 but met the challenge with 16 saves, several at point-blank range. Rated the nation's No. 2 senior goalie by ESPN High School, last year's All-Metro keeper made 10 saves in the second half as NDP outshot the Mawrtians, 19-5, in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference game.
"I saw the ball really well and I felt on my game, which was really nice," Wolf said. "It was one of those days where the ball was like a beach ball basically. I can track it really well, and it doesn't matter where the shot is, I know where the ball's going."
This was the third straight overtime game between the teams, and Bryn Mawr's win ended a run of four straight NDP victories. The Mawrtians (14-1, 9-1 conference) also sealed the No. 2-seeded spot for the A Conference tournament behind No. 1 McDonogh, the only team to beat them.
In overtime, the Mawrtians won the first draw and senior attacker Caroline Turco zipped a shoulder-high shot past Wilcox for an 8-7 lead 34 seconds later.
"The draw was a big thing," said Turco, whose team struggled on the draw early in the game but won the first two in overtime. "We wanted to box out, get the possession and hold it as long as we could. We didn't want to force any stupid shots."
The Blazers won the draw to start the second of two three-minute overtime halves, which are played out before going to sudden-death double-overtime. The draw control enabled them to set up a great shot by Molly Cobb with 1:10 left, but Wolf snared it.
"She side-armed it, and I just popped up and hoped for the best," said Wolf, who is headed for Loyola.
Wolf set the tone early by saving the first four NDP shots on goal, and the Mawrtians took a 5-3 lead into the second half. But the Blazers (8-7, 7-4) dominated possession in the second half, winning four of the first five draws. Despite the constant pressure, Wolf allowed only one free-position goal to Anne Federico in the first 18 minutes.
Back-to-back goals from Erica Matz boosted the Mawrtians' lead to 7-4 with 8:36 to go.
"At halftime, we talked about how we were in it and we just needed to get fired up," Blazers attacker Danielle Siefert said. "In the second half we got the momentum and we got ourselves back in the game. We knew we had to step it up sooner than later."
Seifert sparked the comeback with a free-position goal with 7:04 left and then fed Caroline Doyle with 3:22 to go. Over the next three minutes, the Blazers took eight shots — Wolf saved two, one hit the pipe, three flew wide and one went in but was called back on a foul before Hannah Jablonski fed Doyle to tie with 26.5 seconds left, forcing overtime.
Goals: BM—Matz 3, Turco 2, Bowling 2, Carroll; NDP—Siefert 2, Doyle 2, Cobb, Haus, Federico. Assists: BM—Danko, Dunbar, Snouffer; NDP—Siefert, Jablonski. Saves: BM—Wolf 16; NDP—Wilcox 6. Half: BM, 5-3. End of reg.: 7-7.