Old Mill senior goalkeeper Tim Carrier best summed up the three games his Patriots played against Anne Arundel County rival Glen Burnie this season.
"Whoever got the bounces - the teams were that close," he said.
After one-goal defeats in the regular season and county championship game, the No. 12 Patriots got the second-half bounces and two second-half goals to come away with a 2-1 win at No. 6 Glen Burnie in last night's Class 4A East regional final.
The Patriots improved to 14-3-2 for the season and advanced to their second straight state semifinal, while an outstanding season came to an end for the Gophers, who finished 15-2-1.
Hampered by a bad ankle all season, Old Mill standout striker Daniel Bulls provided the game-winner with 6:10 left, cutting in front of a defender to run on to a ball sent in by Chris Moran. Bulls nudged a shot from 8 yards that found the lower left corner.
"It was a great pass from Chris. I just managed to get goal side of my defender and had a lucky finish," said Bulls.
The Gophers put together what coach Ron Smith called "their best half of the season" in the first 40 minutes and their reward was a 1-0 lead on a goal by Sean Ajifowobaje in the ninth minute.
But the last two minutes of the half had an effect on the remainder of the game for Glen Burnie because senior captain and midfield glue Eric Whisman had to be taken away via ambulance after suffering a deep cut above his eye as the result of a collision with an Old Mill defender. He needed stitches, but was released.
Andrew Engle tied it for the Patriots with a goal nine minutes into the second half.