MONTCLAIR, NJ – The Gov. Livingston Highlanders took on the Montclair Kimberly Academy Cougars on Wednesday night at Clary Anderson Arena, with the game ending in a 2-2 tie.
The first period began with back and forth play for its majority. There was a constant switching of possession of the puck between the two teams, and when Danny Kramer received the puck at the seven-minute mark, he made a run down the ice. Kramer passed to Robert Monroy, who then netted the first goal of the night. The period ended with no penalties on either team, and quite a few saves from each goaltender. Gov. Livingston goalie, Nick Papa, deflected a shot to the upper left hand corner with his shoulder.
Four minutes into the second period, Oscar Worob of Montclair Kimberly was charged with tripping, and a power play ensued. The Highlanders were unable to connect with the back of the net. Instead, at 10:20, MKA’s Brian Schindler scored, assisted by Zach Schaller. Play continued to go back and forth between teams, no team gaining the advantage. With less then four minutes remaining in the period, Schaller spent two minutes in the box for a cross check against Carson Wahlers.
The final period was action-packed. After interference on a breakaway, Matt Buckley of MKA was able to take a shot on the Gov. Livingston goal. It was one on one with Papa, who kept his composure and prevented Buckley from scoring. Max Mele was charged with holding and Monroy with a cross check, but during these two penalties, no progress was made on either side. The Highlander goal was peppered with shots from the Cougars, all deflected or saved by Papa.
For the majority of the period, the two teams skated up and down the ice with even possession. However, James Buckley would get past Papa on a goal assisted by Schindler and Schaller to take the lead with 2:23 left in the period.
At 1:09, Schaller was booked with charging and tripping, resulting in a four-minute penalty.
The game came down to the wire. There was a minute left with Gov. Livingston down by one. The Highlanders with the power play advantage, Kramer made a break for the MKA goal and flicked the puck past Jared Brunner, knotting the score with 25.8 seconds to spare.
The final score was 2-2.
Montclair Kimberly Academy goaltender Jared Brunner made 13 saves on 15 shots for the Cougars.
Governor Livingston goaltender Nick Papa made 33 saves on 35 shots for the Highlanders.
The Montclair Kimberly Academy Cougars (6-7-4) face off against Montclair on Friday, February 10 at 4 p.m. at home.
The Governor Livingston Highlanders (12-9-2) begin their run in the Kelly Cup against Nutley on Friday, February 10 at home at Union Sports Arena with a 9:10 p.m. start.