KINNELON, NJ — The Livingston girls lacrosse team let a sluggish start to a highly anticipated game against Kinnelon affect them, resulting in a 14-5 loss that snapped a three-game winning streak for the team.
“We came out a little flat, I think they got frustrated a little early,” said Livingston head coach Jodi Mensch. "We didn’t seem to ever gel today in getting our offense moving."
Kinnelon took an early 2-0 lead in the game's first five minutes to take control of the contest. Livingston found a way to battle back with a goal from Kelly O’Connor, which put the momentum back into Livingston’s favor temporarily.
"We came back but ultimately we were flat and couldn’t get anything going,” said Mensch.
Kinnelon quickly responded, going on the game's decisive scoring run from the 15-minute mark in the first all the way until the end of the half. A six-to-one scoring run that was sparked by freshman scorer Taylor Smith gave Kinnelon an 8-2 lead the team never looked back from. Smith was a threat the whole game, finishing with seven goals on the evening.
“She’s a great player and I think defensively she was taking us one on one and our girls were crashing and trying to defend, but she was just too good and too fast for us today,” said Mensch.
Livingston goaltender Dani Terry did her best to keep the Lady Lancers in the contest, but it was not enough in the end. Terry finished with a game-high 11 saves after facing nearly 30 shots on the night.
“She took a lot of shots…she did a nice job,” said Mensch.
The Lady Lancers rebounded solidly in the second half, collecting three goals and managing to get as close as a five-goal deficit.
Kelly O’Connor continued what has been a very impressive few games for her, adding a pair of second-half goals to finish with three for the game. O’Connor has now collected 13 points over the last three games for Livingston.
“I think sometimes she feels like she needs to take over,” said Mensch. "She’s an emotional player…she takes charge out there as a sophomore with a team that has a bunch of good seniors who want the ball."
Ultimately, Mensch summed up the disappointing loss to the team’s lack of confidence against a well-established Kinnelon program and a sluggish start.
“We just played flat today,” said Mensch.
Livingston will look to get back on the winning track as they head to Villa Walsh on April 22.
“Oh, we’re coming back,” said Mensch about her team's ability to rebound from the girls' first loss in nearly three weeks.
The team now stands at an overall record of 5-2 on the season, with victories over Millburn, Edison, Kittatinny and Gov. Livingston.
Senior captain Tatum Peacock was also recently named Livingston Athlete of the Week for accomplishing her 100th career goal. Click HERE for the story.