LIVINGSTON, NJ - The Livingston High School boys basketball team came out of the gates with passion and energy against a strong opponent in the Orange Tornadoes.
But Orange regrouped and defeated Livingston, 53-38, on Thursday.
After falling behind by three in the opening moments, the Lancers seized the lead with three consecutive 3-pointers by Eli Friedman, Kahlil Garnes and Andrew Katzeff, giving them a 13-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.
However, Livingston’s momentum was stopped as Orange’s Kishan Alexander started to heat up along with the rest of the team. Orange went on an 11-0 run to start the second quarter, resulting in a score of 17-16 midway through the quarter.
The offense was stagnant for the Lancers as Adam Bellizone and Matt Chasin were the only players to score for Livingston, leading to a 25-20 halftime deficit.
Through the third quarter, Orange maintained its lead because of the strong play by Alexander, Javanti Archer and Maurice Brand. Alexander had 15 points in the game to lead all scorers, scoring both 3-pointers and mid-range baskets.
The Tornado defense was stifling, and seemingly the only player that could score for the Lancers was Bellizone, as he had a 3-pointer and a clean layup in the quarter.
The usual scoring punch provided by Garnes was missing tonight, as his shot was not falling. The score at the end of the third quarter was 42-32.
In the fourth quarter, both teams exchanged baskets for the majority of the time. The Tornado defense prevented the Lancers from closing the gap. Despite a few late baskets by Sean Duffy and Luis Padilla, the team was unable to close the gap in time.
After the game, Friedman attributed the loss to a, “...lack of energy and [we] didn’t come out to play. If we come out and play the way we are supposed to play, we’ll win.”
Lancers coach Dave Cohen elaborated, stating that the team “started off strong, but turnovers later in the game led to eight to 10 wide open layups.”
The Lancers look to finish the season on a positive note at their last game of the season at Livingston High School on Tues., Feb. 11, at 4 p.m. against University.