ELLICOTT CITY, MD., OCT. 30 -- Malcolm Gillian's goal four minutes into sudden-death overtime was the difference, leading No. 4 Oakland Mills to a 1-0 victory over second-ranked Howard today in the semifinals of the Maryland 3A Region I tournament.
Oakland Mills (11-2) will play No. 7 Centennial (11-1-1), which defeated Liberty, 4-0, earlier in the day, for the championship Saturday.
Gillian's goal, his 10th, originated with a throw-in from Wallace Chandler, whose long throws had put pressure on the Lions' goal all evening. This one came from about 30 yards on the left side of the field. The toss first grazed the head of Oakland Mills's Sean Wray before Gillian one-touched the bouncing ball with a waist-high kick from about 12 yards.
"We were trying to get a near-post or just throw it in the net," said Chandler, who was credited with his ninth assist on the play.
Oakland Mills's strategy was clear from the outset: Chandler had put three throw-ins on goal before five minutes elapsed.
Howard (11-1-1), which had defeated Oakland Mills by 3-2 earlier this season, had trouble containing the Scorpions' speed on the wings and was often forced to dump the ball out of bounds to create throw-ins.
"We were just trying to work the corners and get the throws all game," said Gillian. "We feel that we can beat anybody man-to-man."