Oakland Mills ruined rival Wilde Lake's homecoming yesterday and also put the Wildecats' county title hopes in jeopardy by upsetting them in overtime, 28-27.
In overtime, Wilde Lake coach Doug DuVall elected to go for a two-point conversion and the win after tailback Mike Green scored on a 3-yard run to bring the Wildecats (4-4, 3-2) to within a point.
"We moved the ball on the ground all day and felt pretty confident we would score," said DuVall, whose team had lost just three games in four years and had beaten Oakland Mills four straight times.
After Wilde Lake senior quarterback Seth Willingham (6 of 15 for 43 yards) failed in drawing Oakland Mills' defense offside, Green got the call on a handoff. Scorpions senior defensive back Ricky Leon burst into the backfield to stop Green.
Leon's tackle of Green two yards behind the line of scrimmage touched off a boisterous sideline celebration by Oakland Mills (4-4, 3-2) that erased the bitter memory of last week's defeat to county-leading Howard.
"When they scored the touchdown I knew they would go for two because they were getting three or four yards per run," Oakland Mills coach Ken Hovet said. "So we maneuvered Leon to Green's strong side with the sole assignment of keying on Green. He just made a great play by knifing through the line for the tackle."
It was the third time Oakland Mills' defense stopped Green (26 carries, 113 yards) for a loss.
Oakland Mills' offensive hero was tailback Damien Smith (14 carries, 65 yards), who scored the third of his three touchdowns in OT for Oakland Mills.
"We wanted it so bad since this was our final chance to beat them and they thought they could walk over us since it was their homecoming," said Smith.
Oakland Mills freshman kicker Victor Riveria, called up to varsity midway through the season, converted all four of his extra points with the final one being the game-winner.
Scorpions junior running back Lang Wethington also contributed rushing yards on just seven carries.
"We should've won this game," DuVall said. "But they busted a few good plays and we made some critical mental mistakes and miscues that really cost us."
With 1:23 left in regulation, Wilde Lake thought the game was won when senior wide receiver Jermaine Sutton used his 4.3 speed to break free in the end zone and Willingham delivered a strike from the 27-yard line.
But the ball bounced off Sutton's hands and the 'Cats last-gasp drive ended after two more incomplete passes.
Wilde Lake, slowed by two costly turnovers in the second half, had built a 21-7 halftime lead behind Green's touchdown runs of 2 and 17 yards.
However, Green's two scores were sandwiched around Oakland Mills' 1-yard touchdown by senior quarterback Chad Fekel that came courtesy of a Wilde Lake special teams' blunder.
Wilde Lake senior middle linebacker Andy Vanderwagen sacked Fekel to set up fourth-and-14 at the Oakland Mills' 41, but a 12-men-on-the-field penalty against the Wild Lake resulted in an automatic first down for the Scorpions. Ten plays later, Fekel scored.
After Green's second touchdown with 2:17 left in the second quarter, Wilde Lake defensive back Tony Lewis recovered a Fekel fumble at the Oakland Mills' 9-yard line. Three plays later, Willingham connected with a wide-open Brian Bassett for a 9-yard touchdown for a 21-7 advantage.