Underdog North Carroll had neither the size nor the athleticism of host Woodlawn in their Class 4A North region semifinal last night.
The Panthers, however, did have something to prove.
Guard Garrett Williams scored 15 of his game-high 24 points in the fourth quarter, when North Carroll hit several clutch shots to open a lead it never relinquished in a 63-57 win over the No. 15 Warriors.
"I'm happy to come down here and show the people in this area that the boys in Carroll County can play some basketball too," North Carroll coach Troy Warehime said.
The third-seeded Panthers (16-8) advanced to tomorrow's game at top-seeded Parkville, a 59-52 winner over Walbrook. It will mark their first trip to the region final since 1985.
To get there, they first showed a wide rebounding margin against the Baltimore County champions, then shot about 90 percent from the field in the fourth quarter.
Tied at 44, North Carroll took the lead on a three-pointer by Jason Wheatley with just over six minutes left. Woodlawn (17-5) stayed close, pulling to within two on Donovan Boyles' three-point play before North Carroll scored six straight, including four by Wheatley, to extend its lead to 61-53 with 1:38 to play.
Williams, a 5-foot-9 senior, then sealed the win with a late layup to finish the game 10 points above his season scoring average.
"I just felt as though they wanted it more than us in the fourth quarter," said Woodlawn coach Eddie Green Jr. "We lost our mental focus a little bit towards the end."
Forward Vince Grey scored 18 points to lead three other Woodlawn players in double figures.
North Carroll, which finished fourth in Carroll County in the regular season, was mostly successful breaking Woodlawn's press -- something Warehime credited to a solid scouting report.
"Their game was pressing, getting the ball in the open court and using their athleticism," he said. "We worked on [breaking] the press all day [Wednesday]. We did a nice job."
No. 1 Lake Clifton 73, Milford Mill 56 -- Cleveland Melvin had a double double (17 points, 10 rebounds) to power the host Lakers (25-1) past the Millers in a 3A North semfinal. Lake Clifton forced many turnovers late in the second half to seal the game. The Lakers host Mervo in tomorrow's region final at 2 p.m.
No. 10 Old Mill 55, Severna Park 54 -- With the score 54-54, Brandon Riley made one of three free throws with two seconds left to lift the host Patriots (23-2) over the Falcons (18-8) in a 4A East semifinal. Old Mill led by as many as seven points in the second half before Aaron Nutter made a free throw with 35 seconds to tie the game at 54. Riley and Chris Day each finished with 16 points for Old Mill. Severna Park's Brendan Bald led all scorers with 21 points. Old Mill faces Thomas Stone in tomorrow's region final at 3 p.m.
No. 12 Mervo 46, Patterson 38 -- The host Mustangs (18-5) took a 25-10 halftime lead and never trailed in their 3A North semifinal victory over the Clippers. Byron Westmoreland scored 14 points and Tyrone Smothers added 10 for Mervo. Patterson was led by Tyrell Anderson's 14 points.
No. 13 Aberdeen 55, Atholton 52 -- Cordell Smith's two free throws with 25 seconds left gave the Eagles (21-2) a three-point lead as they held off the visiting Raiders (20-6) in a 3A East semifinal. Tyre Moore had 18 points for Aberdeen. The Eagles will face Long Reach in tomorrow's final.
No. 14 Long Reach 56, Howard 50 -- The host Lightning trailed by four late in the fourth quarter, but strong performances from Deon Queen and Obi Ukwuoma helped Long Reach (23-2) defeat the Lions in a 3A East semfinal. Queen scored seven of his 14 points in the fourth, and Ukwuoma scored six of his 10. Jon Moore paced Howard with 11 points.
Parkville 59, Walbrook 52 -- Tim Wiggins and Josh Corbett combined for 33 points to power the host Knights (17-6) past the Warriors (14-10) in a 4A North semifinal. Walbrook's Donte Stuckey led all scorers with 20 points.
Thomas Stone 94, Arundel 82 -- Despite a game-high 23 points from Julian Watson, the Wildcats' season ended in the 4A East semifinals.
Sun reporters contributed to this article