BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - In its annual once-a-season Friday Night Lights game, Governor Livingston earned a 32-16 win against North Plainfield on Friday, September 21. Sophomore running back Jayson Schmidt led GL to the victory with 211 yards and three touchdowns.
After North Plainfield scored 8 early points, Schmidt took over. He made his way to the end zone for a 14 yard score in the second quarter, cutting North Plainfield’s lead to 8-6. Minutes later, the sophomore phenom broke loose for a 68 yard score to put GL up by four.
With time expiring in the first half, North Plainfield appeared to have scored a touchdown to take the lead into the locker room. However, the line judge saw differently, as he called the ball carrier out of bounds at the three yard line.
GL led 12-8 after the first half, and held that lead into the fourth quarter. Schmidt capped off his stellar performance with a 19 yard touchdown run to put GL up 19-8. Later in the quarter, sophomore Victor Chait snagged a North Plainfield attempted pass to give GL possession. Chait’s clutch pick stopped a North Plainfield redzone drive that could have brought them back in the game.
The next North Plainfield drive, Noah Truncale intercepted his second pass of the season and returned it for another GL six. After a missed PAT, GL held a 25-8 lead.
GL capped its best game of the season with a Chris Bruno 10 yard rush. After Andrew Cahill drilled the extra point, Governor Livingston was on top 32-8. North Plainfield converted one last time, cutting the lead to 32-16, but it would not be enough, as GL hung on to win their second game of the year.
Schmidt had his best game of his four game varsity career, and it came on GL football's most anticipated game of the year. “It was really exciting getting to play in front of everyone,” Schmidt said, “When I saw a hole, I took advantage and scored. Our line deserves a lot of credit.”
The atmosphere of FNL clearly had an effect on the players, as they were obviously extra motivated to bring the fans well executed plays. GL showed poise, skill, and fire power on Friday.
The storyline of the game was Schmidt, but the entire ground game of GL was superb on Friday, accounting for all but one offensive play.
With the win, GL brings its record back up to 2-2, and will attempt to get over .500 when they face Somerville on Saturday at home.
Editor's Note: The Highlander section features articles written for The Highlander, Gov. Livingston High School's student newspaper.