BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - The Governor Livingston Highlanders played an intense and fast-paced game against Hillside on Tuesday, which led to overtime.The Highlanders, who were losing before half time, worked hard to possess the ball and had 38 rebounds over Hillside. Because of these rebounds, the Highlanders were able to obtain the ball and work well on offense. Senior Logan Kelly had a big day with 27 points and 12 rebounds as well.
The Highlanders went into this game with a major disadvantage; Junior Reid Harrison was unable to play due to an injury.
“Not having Reid affects us a lot, he is an important part of the team.” said Junior Ron Jordan about his teammate. “We had to adjust to playing without him.” Despite being inactive, Harrison leads and supports his team off the court.
In the first quarter theteams were at a stalemate. The Highlanders possessed the ball frequently and created many opportunities while Hillside was able to score from fast breaks and quick possessions. It wasn't until the 2 minute mark in the first quarter that Hillside began to pull away, leading the Highlanders 16 to 9.
From there Hillside continued to hold their lead. Although the Highlanders had a lot of possessions and scored 11 points, they were still unable to gain any momentum. The score at half time was 28 to 20.
Hillside was quick, they were able to find holes in the Highlander defense and scored 12 points in the second quarter to maintain their lead. The Highlanders played well in the first half but made a few costly mistakes both on offense and on defense. Despite this, the second half was a completely different story for the Highlanders.
They were able to stop the quick Hillside offense and only allowed 9 points in the third quarter. On the offensive end the Highlanders scored 14 points and cut Hillside's lead to just 3 points. “We gained momentum on the offensive end and started to be more patient with the ball” commented Jordan on his team's second half success.
The Highlanders' second half success came from a number of different factors. “We started to lock down Hillside on defense, got more rebounds, and on the offensive end started to play with a strong energy,” said Jordan. Without these three factors the Highlanders would not have been able to make a comeback.
The Highlanders kept the momentum going all throughout the rest of the game. They continued to score points and make key defensive stops. They were able to score 13 points in the fourth quarter and brought the game into overtime.
In overtime, both teams carried the same intensity and emotion they had in the first 4 quarters and fought hard to maintain control. The game was close and both teams wanted to win, however the Highlanders were consistent and continued to lock down the Hillside defense. In the end the Highlanders overcame an 8 point deficit and defeated Hillside 52 to 50 in overtime.