West Essex Girls Soccer Stuns Gov. Livingston, 4-1, in State Semifinal

Gov. Livingston's Isa Bjorkeson (red 39) tries to beat West Essex's Anna George. Credits: Tom Soranno
GL's Lindsay DiStaso (left) is fouled leading to successful penalty kick by Lauren Jankowski. Credits: Tom Soranno
GL's Jenny Pires (left) lines up shot, as West Essex's Kristina Barth tries to make a defensive stand. Credits: Tom Soranno
GL's Alice Caballero (red 9) is challenged on goal attempt. Credits: Tom Soranno

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ – The West Essex girls’ soccer team scored three second-half goals, as the No. 8 Knights shocked No. 4 Gov. Livingston High School in the NJSIAA North Jersey 2, Group 3 semifinals on Monday.

West Essex senior forward Erica Perrotta recorded a hat trick, including two goals in the final 40 minutes of action, to lead the Knights to their second consecutive upset victory in the tournament.

“Last Thursday we beat the No. 1 seed, so I think after beating the No. 1 seed, we feel like anything is possible,” West Essex’s first-year head coach Toni-Anne Cavallo said. “We play in a really tough conference, so the girls were prepared.” 

Sign Up for E-News

After seeing the first half, Cavollo thought her team was lucky to be in the game. West Essex put pressure on the GL back line early, but could not convert. However, the Highlanders put together scoring chance, after scoring chance before eventually breaking through.

In the 27th minute, Gov. Livingston senior Lauren Jankowski scored on a penalty kick after being taken down in the West Essex defensive box. However, the Highlander lead did not last long.

Less than 10 minutes later, Perrotta notched her first of the game when she drove down the left sideline before launching a kick past GL keeper Olivia Emanuel.

Highlander head coach Mike Roof came away frustrated from the first half because his team didn’t convert on their opportunities.

“I was really, really worried about the fact that we didn’t take our chances in the first half,” Roof said. “To me, this game could have been over at halftime realistically if we were more clinical. That’s been a problem for us at times, even in our first two state games.”

The Knights dominated the final 40 minutes, putting continuous pressure on Emanuel and the GL defensive front. Despite making seven saves in the game, West Essex’s offensive force was too much.

Perrotta broke the tie in the 47th minute after streaking down the right sideline.

Then, after Nina Sisco made it a 3-1 game on a penalty kick in the 67th, Perrotta scored the hat trick four minutes later.

“Its my senior year, so I definitely want to make it to the state final and we did,” Perrotta said. “We’ve worked so hard this whole season, since August 13 and we finally have a chance to prove ourselves to this school.”

The loss ends a year of adversity for Gov. Livingston, where the team lost several key players to injury before and during the season. Roof said, injuries aside, this was a winnable game.

“Even with injuries, we’re clearly good enough to win this game today,” Roof said. “We should of [won], but that’s what happens when you don’t take your opportunities, especially in this sport.”

West Essex plays at No. 3 West Morris in Thursday’s section final, where the winner moves on to the Group 3 Tournament.





TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Berkeley Heights

How to Report Potholes in Union County

April 21, 2018

With the winter weather finally winding down, potholes are a frequent issue for drivers. The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders would like you to know there are resources you can use to report them to the proper agency.

"We certainly encourage drivers and commuters to report any pothole they encounter on roads throughout Union County to the responsible authority," said ...

Imagine Holds Annual Board Retreat

Imagine, A Center for Coping with Loss held its annual board retreat on Saturday April 14th at its center in Mountainside.  "It was a valuable, thought-provoking, and educational day for all of us," said John Toriello, Chair of Governance.  "The board and staff worked together to establish the goals of the retreat and facilitate the agenda.  It was a great team ...

Due to Popular Demand, Union County Offers More CPR Classes

ROSELLE PARK, NJ -  Due to popular demand, the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders has announced, two additional CPR training classes have been added in May. Three sessions were previously scheduled in April and are already fully booked.

All classes are open to the general public.

“I encourage all Union County residents to learn basic first aid and emergency ...

Thank You, St. Joseph's Volunteers

April 16, 2018

Thank You from St. Joseph Social Service Center

In recognition of National Volunteer Week, we would like to express our gratitude to the countless volunteers that serve the poor and homeless at St. Joseph Social Service Center in Elizabeth (  Whether you make a sandwich, collect toiletries, tutor in the job program, make soup, wrap Christmas gifts, donate food, ...

New Providence Borough Council to Cultivate Relationships with County Officials

April 12, 2018

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – Councilman Robert Robinson touted the importance of personal relationships with Union County representatives at the Monday, April 9 council meeting.

Union County Freeholders Angel Estrada and Bette Jane Kowalski attended the Street Smart campaign kick-off event prior to the meeting providing the council members with the opportunity to chat face-to-face with the two ...

Chatham Township Committee Unanimously Adopts Ordinance to Ban Marijuana Retail Sales; Cannabis Advocates Disagree

April 13, 2018

CHATHAM, NJ - Chatham Township Mayor Curt Ritter began the new year by pledging to oppose Gov. Phil Murphy's plan to legalize the recreational use of marijuana and Thursday night he followed through by voting to adopt an ordinance that prohibits "marijuana cultivation, production testing, manufacturing facilities and retail stores' in the township.

The Chatham Township Committee ...

Upcoming Events


Sat, April 21, 11:00 AM

Our Lady of Peace , New Providence

Our Lady of the Peace Church Holds Healing & ...

Sun, April 22, 1:00 PM

17 Kent Place Boulevard, Summit

Self-Care Event

Health & Wellness

Sun, April 22, 1:00 PM

17 Kent Place Boulevard, Summit

Self-Care Event

Health & Wellness

Sun, April 22, 1:00 PM

Miller-Cory House Museum, Westfield

Sheep to Shawl Festival


Sun, April 22, 1:00 PM

Miller-Cory House Museum, Westfield

Sheep to Shawl Festival

Education Other

Sun, April 22, 2:00 PM

New Providence Memorial Library, New Providence

Celebrate National Poetry Month @NPML

Arts & Entertainment