Sherwood midfielder Jabel Prom injured his left foot earlier this season and since has worried about the accuracy of his left-footed shot. He doesn't have to fret any longer.
Prom's left-footed strike from 12 yards in the 44th minute was the winning goal in No. 9 Sherwood's 1-0 victory over Bladensburg last night in a Maryland 4A boys' soccer tournament semifinal at Churchill.
"I had been having trouble with my left foot," Prom said, "but I just smacked it in."
The Warriors advanced to the state final, where they will try to repeat as 4A champions against Broadneck. Broadneck defeated Magruder, 2-1 in overtime, in the other semifinal. The teams will play Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at UMBC.
With time running out in the first half, Sherwood (13-3-1) played a corner kick on goal, and Bladensburg goalkeeper George Mansaray deflected the ball out in front of the net.
The ball settled at Prom's feet, and he shot it between a crowd of players into the goal.
Sherwood goalkeeper Max Warren made three saves to give the Warriors their ninth shutout in 10 games.
"They're just the best defense I've ever seen," Prom said of his teammates. "I'd hate to be the striker of another team playing this team."
Bladensburg was playing in the state tournament semifinal for the first time after starting its program four seasons ago.
The Mustangs finished the season 15-1-3.
In the other semifinal, Jamie Flewellyn's header in the eighth minute of overtime capped a late-game comeback and sent the Bruins (15-2-1) to the state final for the first time since 1990.
"We just played our hearts out because we don't have anything to lose," Flewellyn said amid tears of joy.
Tuscarora Makes Final
As her teammates were on the far side of the field celebrating the game-winning goal in the Maryland 3A girls' soccer semifinal last night, Tuscarora sophomore goalkeeper Emmy Simpkins hobbled as far as midfield before she could run no farther.
Despite pulled quad muscles in both of her legs, Simpkins made eight saves in 100 minutes before junior Rachel Micol's dramatic goal in the waning seconds of overtime secured a 1-0 win over River Hill in Frederick.
"I broke down," Simpkins said. "I don't know if I was crying because we won or crying because I was hurt."
Tuscarora (16-1), which opened in 2003 and won the 1A state title last year, will play Towson in the state final next week. Towson defeated Huntingtown, 2-1, in the second game of the doubleheader at Tuscarora.
Britta Vivaldi scored the lone goal of the first half for Huntingtown, but Towson came back in the second half with two goals in three minutes. Towson senior Julie Cavanaugh scored off her rebound in the 56th minute, and two minutes later Nora Truscello's shot bounced off the goalkeeper's hands to give the Generals (10-6-1) the lead for good.
Huntingtown (9-6-1) was winless in the regular season in 2004 and barely above .500 before this year's playoffs.
"I'm real proud of these girls," Coach Gina Hobson said. "They worked real hard to get to this point, to turn their season around."
Micol's goal with 21 seconds left in the final overtime, her second of the season, accounted for the only score between Tuscarora and River Hill (15-3).
A shot by senior Molly Franklin was blocked by the River Hill goalie, bounced off the crossbar, then hit the left post and landed at the feet of Micol, who made the open shot for the win.