Six Harford County soccer teams, three boys and three girls, won region championships Tuesday.
C. Milton Wright and Fallston both pulled off sweeps, while North Harford’s girls and Harford Tech’s boys also won.
All champion teams will now be reseeded with the seven other region winners across the state, which will lay out the state quarterfinal schedule for this Friday and Saturday.
John Carroll, meanwhile, opened Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference playoffs with a win.
At C. Milton Wright, the Mustangs boys team edged visiting Bel Air, 1-0, to win the 3A North Region II title. The Mustangs (10-3-1) dominated play from the start, making runs and sending shots toward the Bel Air goal and its keeper, Ethan Crosby.
Crosby saw a number of shots zoom past the goal, while of the eight saves he made, almost half were spectacular.
The Mustangs had a handful of direct kick chances, but the shots were saved by Crosby in one fashion or another. His toughest came 14 minutes into the second half when Matt Luk drilled a shot from 30-yards out. The ball was headed just inside the upper bar, when Crosby tipped it over the bar.
The Mustangs also had eight corner kicks, but none produced a goal. “The way I see it is, now teams have seen us, most of our goals have come from corner kicks,” senior midfielder Adrian Gonzalez said. “People know where to look and they got 2-3 guys guarding me.”
Oddly enough, when the Mustangs finally did score, Gonzalez wasn’t on the field and it wasn’t a teammate who did.
The ball was played into the box, where CMW senior Jon Klein headed the ball toward the back post. The ball was redirected and goalie Crosby had a line on it, but what he didn’t count on was the ball deflecting off a teammate and back the other way into the goal with 7:43 left to play.
“Little bit of a fortunate bounce for us, but obviously we’ll take it,” Mustangs coach Brian Tully said. “Especially in the second half, we thought we were starting to create more quality opportunities, and yeah, we just weren’t able to get that last touch or get on the end of things. But we thought if we created enough opportunities, you get those fortunate bounces when you’re able to do that.”
The Bobcats (8-3), meanwhile, did really have a shot until Collin Palmieri hit a ground ball shot that Mustangs keeper Jake Adams (two saves) had to lay out for.
Bel Air made its most noise in the final 40 seconds. A surge offensively led to the Bobcats only corner kick with 20 seconds left. The ball went into the box, but the Bobcats were unable to get a good shot and the Mustangs cleared the ball to midfield.
“They controlled the play, the pace and we knew they would do that,” Bobcats coach Dominic Rose said. “Our style is to sit back and counter, so it actually played into our strength. However, when JT [Moran] reinjured his knee, that changed our whole attack. When that happened, we could no longer counter the way we wanted to. So, we went into more of a defensive posture in the second half and something was going to break and we knew it.”
Fallston 3, Patterson Mill 2
The Cougars (11-4-1) knocked of the host Huskies (11-1-2) to win the 1A South, Region I title.
Ethan Salsa, Devin Reddel and Brendon Mudd tallied a goal each for the Cougars.
Mudd and Mike Estremsky added assists.
Vinnie Wysong and Cameron Dawson scored goals for the Huskies with assists from Diego Peralta and Dillon Gough.
“This was our first loss since a preseason tournament on Sept. 3 and a tough ending for our senior class,” Huskies coach Wes Rich said. “However, this senior group accomplished so much this year and had such a special and memorable season. They will be impossible to replace and the coaches thank them for such a fun year.”
Fallston goalie Cason Donahue and Patterson Mill goalie Ian Sauer both had seven saves.
Harford Tech 5, North Harford 1
The Cobras (9-6) defeated the visiting Hawks (8-8) to win the 2A East, Region I title.
Aiden Hall (3), Aiden Warren and Aydin Blevins scored goals for Tech, while Javier Mejia scored for the Hawks.
John Carroll 3, Concordia Prep 0
The Patriots (11-4-2) defeated the visiting Saints in a MIAA first round game.
Christian Rugel gave the Patriots an early lead just seven minutes into the contest with a Ryan Skandalis assist. Skandalis also assisted on the second goal, scored by Cam Tolson. Colin DiIorio, assisted by Josh Petty, closed the scoring.
John Carroll goalies Amir Smith and Tyler Mezzedra combined to make two saves.
C. Milton Wright 1, Bel Air 0
The Mustangs (8-3-2) beat the host Bobcats (11-2-3) to win the 3A North, Region II title.
Freshman Delainey Proctor netted the game lone goal with 12:40 left in the contest. Elise Graf added an assist.
CMW keeper Kaitlyn Williford had six saves. Bel Air goalie Emily McGrain had nine saves.
North Harford 4, Harford Tech 0
The Hawks (7-4-1) shut out the host Cobras (6-5-1) for the 2A East, Region I title.
Senior Ava Lewis had the hat trick with three goals, all in the first half. Senior Reagan Saboy scored the fourth goal from 35-yards out before the end of the first half.
In the second half freshman Alayna Shrodes found the back of the net off a corner kick, however, the goal was nullified due to a hand ball.
Also in the second half Hawks goalie Evie Heinlein (four saves) made a save on a penalty kick.
Tech keeper Abi Marcello had three saves.
Fallston 6, Patterson Mill 0
The Cougars (13-0-1) remained unbeaten with a win over the visiting Huskies (8-7) in the 1A South, Region I final.
Katherine King and Gabby Boyd both had hat tricks with three goals each.
Ellie Ajello, Delaney Nicolaus, Ally Schromsky and Emily Solomon added assists.
Jillian Crawford (three saves) and Leah Rhinehart (three saves) both played goalie for the Cougars.