With a cast conspicuously void of overbearing older women, fingers pointed to the younger, meeker ladies when one "Survivor: Palau" tribe had to eliminate another member Thursday.
Despite the fact that the women of Ulong laid low, the tribe's votes showed their weakest link was a quiet 22-year-old college student from South Carolina.
"I know that they all sensed I was about to crumble," said practicing Mormon Ashlee Ashby, who received four ousting votes at tribal council.
In a strategy that seemed to have been proven sound by , Ashlee stayed in the shadows (unlike Jolanda, the aggressive lawyer whom Ulong booted last week) and did nothing outstanding during either of the challenges. Nor did she build any major alliances.
Perhaps that's where the second-youngest member went wrong. She couldn't get by on her smile alone, unlike Kim Mullen, whose glowing blonde tresses and "cuddling" with team member Jeff Wilson didn't seem to have hurt her in tribal council. She received one vote.
When host Jeff Probst first pitted teams Ulong against Koror for a food-reward challenge, Kim showed up wearing her team's blue bandana around her midsection and a matching blue padded bra on top. Cute, yes. Island apparel? Perhaps. Did she look like she was roughing it? Not exactly.
Each team member was challenged to make it across a wobbly rope-and-barrel course suspended over the water. The prize: a deluxe fishing kit, including a six-foot-long spear.
This challenge seemed easy, until Jeff added two members from the opposing team swinging weighted bags at them.
Several narrow misses of the weighted bags (some swung directly at the women's heads) made viewers wonder what footage was edited out.
The highlight of this challenge: the little ballerina-like flourish the hairdresser from Texas made with his arms before setting off across the rotating barrels. Poor Coby made it about two feet before crashing not so-delicately into the barrels and flailing down into the lagoon.
Ulong won the challenge, the spear kit and a bonus: flint.
But perhaps more importantly, the challenge spurred a Cinderella story: Angie Jakusz.
Once thought to be the team's Achilles Heel, Angie, the tattooed, melancholy bartender from New Orleans, pulled more than her weight.
"She completely dominated. I don't know what got into her, but it was good," Bobbie John Drinkard, the waiter from Alabama, said.
Angie didn't have to sweat at all. Despite her newfound popularity, her team, Koror, won immunity in the second team challenge.
After the second challenge, Ulong went back to camp dejected. Their fire was burnt out and so were their spirits.
Shivering, they turned to playing favorites between Kim and Ashlee. We all know who lost, but watch out for Stephenie LaGrossa. She proved herself to be the honest one. She told Kim and Ashlee they were each candidates for elimination. She told them what she thought of them. And, miraculously enough, everyone still seems to like her.
Also watch out for Ian. His team, picking up on his aquatic skills (he's a dolphin trainer), sent him diving for the lost flint, which he successfully snagged from 20-plus feet undersea.
After her departure, Ashlee did have one thing to say for herself: "I didn't use the excuse that I was cold to cuddle with Ibrahem, because he sure is a cutie."
To see what else Ashlee has to say about Ibrahem Rahman (and the 15 other remaining Survivors), check out Friday's The Early Show.
By Christine Lagorio
Copyright 2005 CBS. All rights reserved.