By Carl Little
Saturday, November 21, 2009
In a game that featured more than 1,000 yards of offense, it was Brad Cummings's field goal in double overtime that mattered most. The Old Mill senior booted a 29-yard kick from straight on to give the Patriots a 58-55 victory over No. 4 Arundel and the Maryland 4A East region title in Gambrills.
Old Mill improved to 10-2 and will advance to next week's state playoffs against Sherwood thanks to Cummings and running back Josh Furman, who had 414 yards and six touchdowns on 42 carries.
Meanwhile, Arundel (11-1) and its record-setting offense suffered its first loss and failed to qualify for the state semifinals for the first time in three seasons.
Cummings, who had missed just one extra point attempt entering Friday, missed on four against Arundel. But when his field goal attempt split the uprights, the senior leaped in relief, his teammates threw their helmets to the sky and the Patriots fans stormed the field.
The stunned Wildcats walked off the field in disbelief.
"It's amazing," Cummings said. "All I could think was we won. We've got practice next week."
The score was tied at 20 at intermission, and turnovers made the difference in the second half.
Furman had an 86-yard touchdown run on the second play of the third quarter, and on Arundel's ensuing possession, quarterback Billy Cosh had an interception returned to Arundel's 3-yard line. Old Mill's Jason Clements scored a rushing touchdown, Furman tacked on the two-point conversion run, and in 1 minute 24 seconds Old Mill took a 34-20 lead.
It was Arundel's turn to make a run in the fourth quarter. With Old Mill leading 40-27, the Wildcats converted two Old Mill fumbles into 14 points. Cosh and senior wide receiver RJ Harris connected on passes of two and 15 yards and took a 41-40 lead with 8:27 to play.
Harris finished with 20 catches for 293 yards and three touchdowns and shattered the MPSSAA record for catches in a single season with 114 (the previous mark of 103 was set by Arundel's Alec Lemon in 2008 and Brandon Johnson-Farrell with the Wildcats in 2007).
Cosh went 32 of 60 for 443 yards, with four touchdowns and two interceptions.
"It was heartbreaking," Harris said through tears. "It hurt, but we did the best we could."
"I couldn't even watch it on the sideline," Furman said of the field goal try. "When I heard the crowd's reaction, that's when I knew it went in."