Old Mill boys soccer coach Don Hobbs figured if his team could hold Severna Park to one or two goals last night, "we had a good chance to win."
A shutout? That thought never entered his mind.
Hobbs used five defenders, and the fourth-seeded Patriots went on to upset top seed Severna Park, 4-0, in the Class 4A, Region IV semifinals at Chesapeake.
The victory moved Old Mill (9-3-1) into Saturday's final, where it will face third seed North County, a 2-1 winner in overtime against Broadneck last night. The Patriots had missed the playoffs the previous four years.
"I never dreamed we could shut them out," Hobbs said of the Falcons (11-2), who had scored 44 goals this year and had won 11 straight.
Severna Park coach Don Gregg was just as surprised.
"They came out with lots of intensity, and we got beat by a better team tonight," he said. "We didn't deserve to win; they did."
The Patriots led 2-0 at halftime on two goals by senior reserve Pat Crawford. The first came off a header from senior Dan Knight with 23:52 left, and the second was off a pass from Bob Thomas with 11 minutes remaining.
The Falcons had been called for obstruction, giving Old Mill an indirect kick in front of Severna Park's goal. Thomas quickly set the ball and tapped it to his right, where Crawford banged it into the net.
Seniors Don Yost and Chip Hornbeck added goals in the second half, as Old Mill avenged an earlier 5-3 defeat to Severna Park.
"They embarrassed us last time," Hobbs said.
In that game, Severna Park senior Mark Casper (11 goals, 12 assists) scored twice. But the defensive maneuvering last night, which included having Dan Knight guard Casper for most of the game, shut down the Falcons' leading scorer.
Old Mill senior keeper Mike Mullen had to make just three saves.
Hobbs said: "[The Falcons] do such a good job of sending people through the middle that we figured, if we can pick [Casper] up, and then come back out of our end, we'll get chances to score. We knew if we got in a shootout where everybody is scoring goals, we couldn't win."