Wilde Lake upset top-seeded host River Hill in the 3A East regional final on Friday, with the defense using a few key plays to help the Wildecats to a 13-7 overtime win.
Senior E'Ron Pruitt caught a third down pass from senior quarterback Joe Kelly for a 5-yard touchdown on the first possession of the overtime to give Wilde Lake (9-3) its first lead. River Hill (10-2) blocked the ensuing extra point try, but was stopped on downs at the Wilde Lake 4-yard line on its overtime series.
Junior running back Aaron Wells' 3-yard touchdown run for the Hawks in the first quarter capped a 15-play, 65-yard drive. But the Hawks were held scoreless the rest of the night despite moving the ball into Wildecats territory several times.
River Hill drove to the Wilde Lake 15 on its second possession, but junior linebacker Antoine Barnes intercepted a pass to end the threat. A turnover again derailed the Hawks on their first drive of the second half when they fumbled two plays after Wells had run 46 yards into Wilde Lake territory.
"The key tonight was turnovers," River Hill Coach Brian Van Deusen said. "But give them credit. They battled the whole game, and they made the pass play when they needed to."
The Wildecats offense struggled at times, too, but senior A.J. Harris ran 26 yards into the end zone on a fourth-and-long with 45 seconds remaining in the half.
"This is big," Pruitt said. "None of us seniors had ever beat River Hill."
— Nate Sandstrom, Columbia Flier
Eastern Tech 7, City 6: Eastern Tech scored with 2:34 remaining in the fourth quarter from inches away on fourth down and made the extra point to take the lead, holding on for the win in the Class 2A North regional final at CCBC-Essex.
Da'Quan Smith put the Knights (8-4) ahead early in the first quarter on a 51-yard touchdown run against the Mavericks (11-1). The extra point was missed.
Middletown 30, No. 11 South Carroll 6: In a rematch of last year's 2A West regional final, the outcome was the same as the host Knights (11-1) were able to beat the undefeated Cavaliers (11-1), who have never won a state title despite reaching the semifinals five times.
Middletown will advance to the 2A state semifinals looking for its first state title.