HOLMDEL, NJ - Gov. Livingston boys soccer made the long journey down the Parkway to Holmdel to play the top-seeded and number 5 in the State, Hornets.
The Highlanders were massive underdogs against the back-to-back state champions but from the first minute made it clear they were not going to roll over. The Hornets had much of the possession in the first half but solid defending kept them from having many clear cut chances and GL looked dangerous on the break. At halftime, the game was evenly poised at 0-0 and belief started to grow in the Highlander players and traveling fans.
GL started the second half very positively and took the lead when senior, Jeremy Malave slotted home from the left side of the penalty box. With 10 minutes to go, the Hornets scrambled home an equalizer, but far from being the end of GL, they dug deep and battled on. At the end of regulation it was still 1-1 and so "golden goal" extra time started. Both teams came close in the opening period, but as the game headed into a second extra-time session it was clear that penalty kicks would be the decider. The Highlanders were 1 and 1 in shootouts, beating Cranford and losing to Westfield in the County Tournament.
Both teams missed their first kicks, then while Jeremy Malave, Rafe Barnum and Christian Montes all converted their spot-kicks, senior goalie Connor Bigelow came up with a massive save. The Hornets hit the post with their last kick and the upset was complete.
The boys now move on to the sectional semi-final where they will play the winner of South Plainfield @ Rahway on Tuesday afternoon (Nov 5th).