WEST ORANGE, NJ – On Monday afternoon, the Governor Livingston Highlanders thwarted the Millburn Millers’ attempt at another win, resulting in a 3-1 victory at Codey Arena.
After losing to the Millers 5-0 in December, Gov. Livingston was ready for redemption. Danny Kramer was injured when the two teams last met, and “not only does he score goals, but he brings a lot. He helps make everybody else on the team better too, so that’s a big difference,” said head coach Matt Anderson.
The puck dropped and both teams came out strong. For most of the first period, play was back-and-forth, with no team having the upper hand. Finally, Gov. Livingston gained an advantage when Alec Stupp of Millburn was given a two-minute penalty for tripping, and a power play commenced.
With 1:45 left in the first period, senior co-captain Danny Kramer slapped the puck past Millburn goaltender, Gabe Nadell, making the first goal of the afternoon. The assists came from Carson Wahlers and Robert Monroy. The Millers were in for another sting when sophomore Ryan Erickson, assisted by Kramer and Jacob Miller, overwhelmed the Millburn defensive line and Nadell, sliding an additional goal into the back of the net with 0:25 remaining in the period.
“We knew coming into the game, we were going to need to come out early, and try to get something done early in the game,” said Anderson.
Charles Palmer, assisted by Spencer Brown, kicked off the second period for the Millers with a goal at 13:35. Gov. Livingston’s Cole Wahlers was issued a penalty at 12:30, and a power play occurred. Matt Cohen of Millburn evened the playing field after he was also issued a two-minute penalty shortly after. Neither team was able to use the power play to their advantage.
With 6:52 left in the second period, Ryan Monroy whipped a shot past Nadell with help from Carson and Cole Wahlers. At 4:31, Andy Fresen was given a holding penalty. As he left the penalty box, Cohen occupied it for an interference penalty. Zach Miller occupied GL’s penalty box for tripping at the 18-second mark, and both teams went into the third period down a man.
In the third period, neither the Highlanders nor the Millers made any headway. Millburn pulled Nadell at 1:43 to add an extra man, but could not create any opportunities. Instead, two of their men ended up in the penalty box. Jack Williams took a two-minute penalty for tripping and Charles Palmer joined him, after tackling GL’s Danny Kramer. Ryan Monroy of Gov. Livingston also ended up in the penalty box for tripping. The buzzer sounded and the game came to a close, Governor Livingston winning 3-1.
“I think they probably weren’t ready for what we were going to come out with. The boys were very smart about how hard they played in the first period, and then we just tried to ride that and be smart the rest of the game,” said Anderson.
Millburn goaltender Gabe Nadell made 21 saves on 24 shots for the Millers.
Governor Livingston goaltender Nick Papa made 32 saves on 33 shots for the Highlanders.
“Our goaltender, who’s just a sophomore, has gotten incredibly better since the first half of the season too, so he’s on a nice hot streak right now,” added Anderson.
The Millburn Millers (11-3-2) face Nutley on Sunday, January 22 away at 5 p.m.
The Gov. Livingston Highlanders will celebrate their seniors as they take on Cranford Friday, January 20 at Union Sports Arena at 9:10 p.m.