Jeff Ngare played only 18 seconds of yesterday's Class 2A South Region championship game at Oakland Mills.
But 18 seconds was enough. Ngare banked in a 25-foot three-pointer at the buzzer of the second overtime, lifting second-seeded and 14th-ranked Oakland Mills to a 68-67 victory over fifth-seeded Glenelg (14-11).
Ngare's improbable shot sent the Scorpions to Friday's state semifinal at College Park. Oakland Mills' last trip to the final four was in 1991 when it lost to Catonsville in the semifinal.
"College Park here we come. It was meant for us. We knew that since the beginning of the season," said Ngare, who entered the game when Quan Davis left with leg cramps.
Despite the loss of this season's leading scorer, Mike Hill (16 points), who fouled out with three minutes left in regulation, the Scorpions hung tough to force two overtimes against Glenelg, which had upset top-seeded Howard County champion Atholton Wednesday.
When Glenelg's Damian Miles (17 points) made two free throws with 11 seconds left in the second overtime, Oakland Mills trailed 67-65.
With 11 seconds left, Oakland Mills' second-leading scorer, Irving Conwell, brought the ball down the floor but was doubled-teamed. With four seconds left, he threw a cross-court pass to Ngare, who was not closely covered.
"To Irving's credit, he didn't force the shot but reversed the ball and gave us a chance to win it," Oakland Mills coach Dave Appleby said.
Davis had tied the game at 65 with 21 seconds left when he threw in an over-the-shoulder shot as he was falling down with his back to the basket.
Conwell's driving basket with seven seconds left in regulation tied the game at 50 to force the first overtime. Conwell had 17 points, seven assists, four steals and seven rebounds.
Davis' layup with 1:19 left in the first overtime put Oakland Mills ahead 57-55. But Ben Gugliotta (11 points), who played well off the bench for Glenelg, tied it 57-57 on a Miles-assisted layup with seven seconds left.
Glenelg led for most of the game. Its biggest lead was 47-41 with 4:50 left in regulation.
Oakland Mills (21-3), which was 5-15 a year ago and finished in last place in Howard County, overcame serious foul trouble. Davis and Conwell played both overtimes with four fouls.
Shawn Hill rescued Oakland Mills with a 12-point, 12-rebound effort off the bench. And Matt Wichita scored 12.
"I thought we were going to have a lot of trouble winning the game when we lost Mike Hill," Appleby said. "But I tried to remain positive and convince the kids we could still win."