When fifth-ranked Oakland Mills failed to score yesterday in the first half against Howard, coach Don Shea was afraid it was happening again.
"In both of the games we lost [to Atholton and Loyola], the opposing coaches have told me their goalies have played games of their careers," Shea said.
But the Scorpions (5-2, 1-1) scored three goals in the second half, including two within the first nine minutes, for a 3-2 victory over visiting Howard (4-3, 1-1).
Oakland Mills used its experience and quickness to dominate a young unranked Howard team that starts two freshmen and three sophomores. The Scorpions outshot the Lions 19-9, including 11-4 in the first half.
"There was a chance we could have gotten killed," Howard coach Rudy Storch said. "We are slower and younger. We lost 9-2 earlier in the season to [unranked] Thomas Stone. I was ecstatic with the way we played. If we hadn't played so good, then we would have gotten beaten badly."
Matt Shaqogue put Howard ahead 1-0 with eight minutes remaining in the first half, putting a shot past goalkeeper Jason Kranefeld after the senior became tangled with a Lions player in front of the net.
The Scorpions' first goal came 20 seconds into the second half, when striker Ted Lawler capitalized on a mistake by Howard goalie Jason Shefrin as he rushed out of the goal to cut down the angle. Lawler sliced the ball past Shefrin for an easy score.
Sweeper Mike Jenkins added a goal eight minutes later as headed a throw-in from Rob Ricketts, putting Oakland Mills ahead 2-1.
"In both games we lost, we have pounded and pounded but just couldn't score," Shea said. "I was excited that we scored three goals."
Howard tied the game at the 54:00 mark, as Jason Yancey shook a defender and shot the ball past Kranefeld. Oakland Mills scored the game-winner when Ben Semcock hit Lawler with a crossing pass, and the junior split two defenders, blasting a shot past the Howard keeper.
The game was marked by five yellow cards, including four on Oakland Mills.
"It's a fierce rivalry," said Kranefeld, who received a yellow card for punching a Howard player. "Usually the games are rough between us."
Shea said, "There is an intense rivalry between both schools and in every sport."