UNION, NJ - The Gov. Livingston girls basketball team pulled off a thrilling 33-31 victory over seventh seed Union in the quarterfinal round of the Union County Tournament Wednesday evening at Union .
The 10th-seeded Lady Highlanders shot out to a fast start, outscoring the Farmers in the first half 25-9. Senior captain Lindsay Gerrato was an offensive threat, working through Union's double team defense to score 19 of her 21 game points in the first half.
"The first two quarters of the game, we did an excellent job of adjusting to their defense with Stacey Berliner and Ally McGlynn making open shots," said Gov. Livingston head coach Vin Gulbin. "This forced Union to switch tactics defensively."
The Farmers' necessary adjustment was effective in the second half. The second half was a different game, said Gulbin. "Union switched defenses and we missed shots that we were making in the first half," he said. GL was held to just 8 second half points.
During the teams' last meeting earlier this month, Nneka Moneme and Allison Seater contributed a combined 32 points in their 46-36 victory. Senior Lara Romano and Gerrato's defensive pressure held them to 12 combined points during this matchup.
Union's second half adjustments forced Gerrato and fielding to play an inside outside game. The Lady Highlanders remained tough, focused on getting the ball into the hands of sharp shooter Skylar Dowlings to relieve pressure.
Union's strong second half [outscoring GL 22-8] would not be enough to get past their 16 point first half deficit.
Coach Gulbin commended Farmers Coach Justin Meyer of his second half effort. "Justin Meyer is a great coach and really rallied his girls to fight and get back into the game," said Gulbin.
Dowling finished with five points for the Lady Highlanders; Romano, Berliner and MgLynn added two apiece and Fiona Kerr added one point.
Gov. Livingston advances to the semifinal round playing neighborhood rival in New Providence with a 7:30 p.m. tip-off.