Oakland Mills ousts Liberty, 12-6

May 14, 1994|By Jeff Seidel | Jeff Seidel,Special to The Sun

Oakland Mills played host to Liberty earlier this spring on a cold, rainy afternoon. The Scorpions, state semifinalists last year, needed triple overtime to beat Liberty.

This time it was a little easier.

Chris Constantino scored three of his four goals in the first half, when No. 12 Oakland Mills shut down visiting Liberty, and the Scorpions posted a 12-6 victory in a Class 1A-2A West Region semifinal yesterday.

Top-seeded Oakland Mills (12-2) advances to the region final against Howard County rival and second-seeded Glenelg, a 12-9 winner over Atholton in the other semifinal. The game will be at 3:45 p.m. Tuesday at Oakland Mills.

Oakland Mills, which beat Liberty in the region semifinal last year, dominated first-half play from the opening faceoff yesterday. The Scorpions out-hustled, outhit and out played Liberty (6-6), taking a 5-0 lead at the break.

"It's got to be the one where we were 100 percent," said Oakland Mills coach Phil Stephenson. "We controlled everything. We dictated the terms of the game."

Constantino opened the scoring 33 seconds into the game and scored another later in the period. He scored again after a perfect fast-break feed from Iggy Levelev (two goals, one assist) with 1:10 left in the half for the fifth goal.

Stephenson and Constantino said the Scorpions often searched for first-half consistency this season. At times, poor second quarters hurt them.

The second quarter, however, may have been the Scorpions' best in this game. They outshot (8-2) and outscored (3-0) Liberty and kept possession for much of the quarter.

"We always had bad second quarters," said Constantino. "Not today. We had intensity throughout the game."

Oakland Mills kept the pressure on the Lions throughout. Even though Liberty woke up in the second half, the Lions could do no more than trade goals with Oakland Mills.

"We didn't execute. We were flat," said Liberty coach Troy Barnes. "We just weren't clicking [and] just weren't executing."

A big reason the Liberty offense struggled for so long was simple -- the Oakland Mills defense. Chris Sheldon, John Campbell and Lang Wethington spent the game disrupting the Liberty offense in a variety of ways.

Justin Cross (two goals) and Jon Cougnet (two goals, one assist) did much of the work for Liberty in the second half. Meanwhile, Danny Hart scored all three of his goals for Oakland Mills in the second half to help keep the Scorpions in control.

Oakland Mills, which also got help from Matt Rollman (two goals) and Sam Smith (one goal, three assists), never let up.

"What we told the kids is they had to play a full game, and that every game from now on is for the state title," said Stephenson. "If they lose, they go home, and they came out and met the challenge."

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.