Old Mill suffered a tough one-point loss to South River in the regular-season finale last week, but the Patriots gained some revenge Friday night.
Shawn Brown ran for 225 yards and two touchdowns, and Brady Ludwig threw for another score as the host No. 9 Patriots relied heavily on their ground game to beat No. 11 South River, 21-7, in a Class 4A East regional semifinal.
Old Mill (9-2) will host No. 13 Meade in the regional championship next week as the Mustangs surprised No. 4 Arundel, 36-28, in the other Class 4A East semifinal matchup. South River ended its season with an 8-3 record.
The Seahawks scored a 36-35 victory over the Patriots last week, but Old Mill changed up a bit in this contest. After seeing that the ground game was working early, the Patriots stuck with it. They didn't throw a pass until nearly three minutes into the second quarter.
"The run was working," Brown said. "So we just had to stick with it."
The Patriots ran on their first 19 plays from scrimmage and kept rolling. In fact, they used Brown most of the time as he finished with 39 carries and ran in every direction.
Brown ran for a 4-yard touchdown in the first quarter and a 3-yard score in the third for a 14-0 lead. Ludwig threw a short pass to Raykwon Young that he turned into a 44-yard touchdown late in the third quarter to make it 21-0.
Old Mill also was helped because South River, which loves to go for it on fourth down, did that in this game and found problems. The Seahawks went for it on fourth down from their own 11 in the first quarter and convertedt, but quarterback Connor Cox fumbled and the Patriots recovered at the 17.
Brown scored four plays later. South River missed again on fourth down from its own 44 in the third quarter, and Brown got his 3-yard touchdown six plays later.
The Seahawks also hurt themselves by just missing on several plays on offense. They dropped four passes in the end zone from Cox and came up empty on five different trips into Patriots territory. Their only score came on Cox's 19-yard touchdown pass to James Smith.
"Offensively, we didn't take advantage of all of our chances," South River coach Lance Clelland said. "We had a lot of chances."
The Old Mill defense played much better after giving up 36 points last week. This time, they forced four turnovers, pressured Cox several times and made a number of good plays.
"Our defense stepped up absolutely huge," Old Mill coach Chad McCormick said. "Our guys just played [better]."
Class 4A East Region
Old Mill 21, South River 7
S 0 0 7 0-7
O 7 0 14 0-21
O-S. Brown 4 run (Dagg kick)
O-S. Brown 3 run (Dagg kick)
O-Young 44 pass from Ludwig (Dagg kick)
S- Smith 19 pass from Cox (Sorrells kick)