Sports

Gov. Livingston Honors Former Coach, Gets First Win of Season Over North Plainfield

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Players from the GL Bicknell Era celebrated the 50th Anniversary by unveiling a plaque during halftime of Saturday's football game. Credits: Bobbie Peer
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BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ – On a day that felt more suitable for summer preseason than a regular season September game, Governor Livingston celebrated the legacy of former Highlander Coach Jack Bicknell on its way to a 36-29 win over North Plainfield.

Bicknell coached the Highlanders from 1964-1967, a time now referred to as the “Bicknell Era”. GL went 28-6-2 in those four seasons, including 9-0 in 1965, when the team won the school’s only state football championship. Bicknell went on to be an assistant at Boston College and then the head coach at the University of Maine for five seasons. He returned to Boston College as the head coach before the 1981 season, a position he stayed in until 1990.

Bicknell’s crowning moment as a college coach was the 1984 season, in which the BC Eagles finished the season at 10-2 and ranked No. 5 in the country. The season included quarterback Doug Flutie’s famous Hail Mary touchdown pass as time expired to beat the Miami Hurricanes. The Eagles capped it all off with a Cotton Bowl victory and Flutie winning the Heisman Trophy, given annually to college football’s best player

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Members of the teams that Bicknell coached at GL were on hand for the revealing and dedication of a plaque that will now be permanently on display at the high school. While Bicknell was unable to make the ceremony, the players were honored on the field during the first quarter of the game.

The Highlanders didn’t disappoint as they played in front of their predecessors, overcoming a 16-point deficit in the first half to beat the Canucks. Quarterback Pat DeAngelis had three rushing touchdowns and threw for a fourth while amassing 289 total yards. Up by seven with 1:21 left in the game and North Plainfield driving towards the game tying score, GL’s Matt Schuman intercepted Brandon Smith’s pass to seal the victory for the Highlanders.

GL will have a bye week before they travel to Summit to face the Hilltoppers under the lights on Friday, Oct. 6. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Investors Bank Field.

Editor's Note: Check back in with TAPinto Berkeley Heights for complete photo gallery and TAPinto's conversations with the players of the "Bicknell Era." 

Gov. Livingston Box Score

Offense
Player   Pts
Pat DeAngelis   18
Matthew Schuman   6
James Snyder   6
Passing
Player Comp Att Yds TD
Pat DeAngelis 11 16 196 1
Receiving
Player Rec Yd Avg TD
Chris Bruno 1 3 3  
Dylan Dwyer 3 44 14.7  
Jake Faulkner 1 18 18  
Jake Pencek 2 23 11.5  
Matt Richel 1 3 3  
Matthew Schuman 3 105 35 1
Rushing
Player Att Yds TD
Chris Bruno 3 12  
Pat DeAngelis 23 93 3
Dylan Dwyer 2 9  
Defense
Player Tack Int
Chris Bruno 4  
Pat DeAngelis 2  
Dylan Dwyer 3.5  
Jake Faulkner 1  
Brendan Fenton 0.5  
DJ Gonnelli 6.5  
Brandon Gyory 1  
John Jeffords 1  
Diego Lopez 2.5  
Mike Magliacano 3.5  
Jake Pencek 0.5  
Matt Richel 2  

Drew Rittman

Matt Schuman

Noah Truncale

6.5

3

1

1

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