By Chad Robert Snyder

Pilot staff writer

The Bruins' girls varsity soccer team came into Tuesday's matchup against Oregon Episcopal School with high expectations, only to be disappointed by a 5-0 loss.

Despite not having lost a single league match in the last two years, the Bruins were, for the second year in a row, ousted in their first playoff game.

andquot;I don't know what to say,andquot; said Bruin Head Coach Kristen Frank. andquot;(The Aardvarks) are a really good team from their keeper to their forwards.andquot;

Frank also mentioned a Bruin tendency that she'd been concerned about for the entire season.

andquot;It was another slow start,andquot; she said. andquot;This time it really hurt us.andquot;

In Tuesday's game, her season-long concern was justified.

By the twelfth minute of game action the Aardvarks possessed a 2-0 lead and the Bruins had not advanced the ball anywhere near OES's goal.

The Bruins did make some strong runs near the end of the first half, but failed to convert opportunities and entered halftime trailing by two.

Coming out in the second half, the Bruins appeared to be playing more disciplined soccer. Their passing improved, as did their defense, but not enough to thwart two more Aardvark goals by the 62nd minute.

Down 4-0, the girls attempted to get back into contention, but neither luck, nor the clock, were on their side.

After the game, Frank said the effort her team put forth was obvious, but, unfortunately, so was the Aardvarks' skill.

andquot;They're a calm, collected team,andquot; she said. andquot;No loss is fun, but their team will make it far into the playoffs.andquot;

When asked why a fast start is essential to Bruin success, Frank said the team doesn't play up to its potential until they get started.

andquot;Our momentum starts when we score, so you can see what happens when we don't score early,andquot; she said.

With the loss in the books, Frank said her team - which she calls andquot;a really tight-knit, solid group of girlsandquot; - has come a long way.

andquot;We progressed a lot,andquot; she said. andquot;We learned a lot too, and for a team with so many sophomores and so much playoff experience, the future looks good.andquot;

Frank said she sees league domination again next season, and that she's hopeful the Bruins can take the next step - getting deeper into the playoffs.