With two solid young goalies on the roster, Maryvale co-coach Bob Russell likes to play each for a half, but yesterday, starter Megan Huether was too hot to sit.
Huether made one exceptional save after another to spark the No. 9-ranked Lions to a 7-2 victory over No. 15 Mercy in an Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference Sinclair League game.
Huether's seven saves, three interceptions, one knockdown and several ground balls caused Mercy coach Joy Lewandowski to say: "She's by far the best that we've played against."
Huether, who missed almost all of last season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament, has a goals-against average through five games of 3.0. Against Mercy (3-3 overall, 2-2 league), she allowed just one in 40 minutes.
"I've never seen a high school goalie play the way she did," said Russell.
Huether's performance, with a strong game from Lions defenders Molly McLaughlin, Molly Urlock, Jessica Hanson and Emily Vitrano, tamed a Magic attack averaging 13 goals a game.
After Mercy's Kristi Korrow faked out Huether for the first goal, the Lions shut down the Magic for more than 37 minutes.
Huether never allowed the Magic to gain momentum.
The Lions (5-0, 3-0) showed more patience in their settled offense and had the goals to show for it. After Shannon Kron answered Korrow's goal in a little over a minute, Kate Killen and Kate Nolan scored to finish off a 3-1 half. Kelly Devlin completed the Lions' 7-0 run with her second goal with 12: 25 left.
Korrow slipped a free-position shot past Karrie Moore for the final goal.
Moore, who relieved Huether with about 10 minutes remaining, usually splits time with Huether and has allowed just 3.5 goals per game.