Maryland 3A/2A state semifinals: Urbana-River Hill, Huntingtown-Milford Mill clash in semis; Douglass aims for 2A final berth
By Louis Nelson, Greg Schimmel and Eric Detweler,
Urbana at No. 6 River Hill
Friday, 7 p.m.
At stake: A berth in the 3A final on Nov. 29 at M&T Bank Stadium.
Watch for: River Hill’s three-headed rushing attack. The defending 3A champion Hawks (12-0) feature a stable of running backs that have combined for 52 touchdowns this season — including 34 on the ground. Senior Justin Arn has the most rushing touchdowns this season for the Hawks with 13, but his 18 total touchdowns are second behind Evan Griffin’s 20. Stephan Osong is a two-way scoring threat, scoring 10 touchdowns on offense, nine of which came on the ground, and four more on defense and special teams. Urbana (9-3) will once again turn to sophomore Raekwon Gray, who rushed for 221 yards and four touchdowns to lead the Hawks to a 3A West final upset of Seneca Valley.
Skinny: With a win, River Hill would extend its current winning streak to 23 games and advance to its second consecutive 3A championship game. Urbana is aiming to return to its second state final in three seasons — the Hawks won the 4A title in 2010.
No. 11 Huntingtown at Milford Mill
Saturday, 1 p.m.
At stake: A berth in the Maryland 3A final on Nov. 29 at M&T Bank Stadium.
Watch for: Huntingtown’s streaky defense against a prolific Milford Mill offense. In two playoff games so far, the Hurricanes (11-1) have forced eight turnovers, including two interception returns for touchdowns by defensive back Bryson Curtis and linebacker Austin Kline. The 3A South champions have allowed 14 points or fewer in each of their last five games and have 28 takeaways this season. Milford Mill (11-1), led by dynamic senior quarterback Kyle McEachern, has scored 30 points or more in six consecutive games.
Skinny: Huntingtown is playing in its fourth consecutive state semifinal, but will be playing for its first state title game appearance since 2009 after losing in this round two years in a row. Milford Mill will likely try to get into a shootout to reach its first state championship game since 1987.
No. 9 Douglass at Edmondson-Westside
Friday, 7 p.m.
At stake: A berth in the Maryland 2A final on Dec. 1 at M&T Bank Stadium.
Watch for: Douglass quarterback Devin Butler. The 6-foot-2, 165-pound freshman won the starting job in the preseason and has managed the offense well for Coach J.C. Pinkney with 1,099 passing yards and 11 touchdowns. Butler showed a flair for the dramatic two weeks ago, leading the Eagles (11-1) on a game-winning field goal drive in a 29-27 region semifinal win over Patuxent. If the Red Storm (11-1) load up the box to stop the run, the quarterback can look downfield for Tennessee-bound wide receiver Paul Harris.
Skinny: Seeking its first state title, Douglass is back in the state semifinals after a runner-up finish last season; Edmondson-Westside’s lone loss this season came on Oct. 5 to two-time defending 1A champion Dunbar (Balt.).