In a playoff-like setting with both teams needing a win to gain a postseason berth, the Governor Livingston High School football team rolled to a 35-13 win over Bernards on Friday night in Bernardsville to clinch a playoff spot.
With the win, Governor Livingston picked up 26 power points and will likely be the No. 7 seed in the NJSIAA North 2 Group III field, where they would face No. 2 seed Summit in the first round next week.
Bernards will miss the playoffs despite a 6-2 record, as the Mountaineers needed to win or have Madison lose to Newton in order to qualify in North 2 Group II. Madison defeated Newton 36-0 on Friday night.
Union 16, Hunterdon Central 14: Jabree Robertson scored a go-ahead touchdown on a two yard run with 30 seconds left to catapult Union to the victory. The Farmers started the drive from the 50 with about three minutes left in regulation, down 14-10, and were aided by a defensive pass interference call on a fourth down play which extended the drive and brought the ball to the 10-yard line of Hunterdon Central.
Hunterdon Central (5-4) quarterback Mike Knight, returning from a broken fibula, played in only the first quarter and connected with Ryan Dunleavy on a 45 yard touchdown pass which gave the Red Devils a 7-0 lead.
The Red Devils took a 14-10 lead early in the fourth quarter when Christian Shaw threw a 37-yard touchdown pass to Max Miller.
Linden 34, Bridgewater-Raritan 14: Eric Nickel scored on a four yard rushing touchdown and Ryan Moran returned a fumble 20 yards, both in the third quarter, for the only scoring for Bridgewater-Raritan (2-7).
The Panthers trailed 20-0 at halftime, as Linden quarterback Dazzmen Johnson threw three touchdown passes of 35, 35, and 30 yards.
Piscataway 49, East Brunswick 7: Elijah Pierson returned a kickoff 95 yards for a score and also had a pair of touchdown runs to help the Chiefs (5-3) head into the North 2 Group V playoffs with some momentum.
Piscataway, which has won its last three outings, will likely host a first-round playoff game.
Elijah Barnwell scored on runs of 37 and 24 yards for Piscataway, which led 21-0 at the half. Piscataway scored 14 points in each of the final three quarters to pull away.
Sellis Robertson and Kyren Nash also had touchdown runs for Piscataway. Brandon Tomori’s 3-yard scoring scamper accounted for East Brunswick’s lone touchdown.
The Bears fell to 1-7.
South Plainfield 32, Perth Amboy 8: Roemello Monroe scored four rushing touchdowns as the Tigers (6-2) rolled to a GMC White Division victory. Jared Agee accounted for South Plainfield’s other touchdown, running a sweep 55 yards for a score.
Perth Amboy (1-7) trailed just 13-0 at the half. The Tigers moved the ball on offense before the intermission, but hampered themselves with penalties.
John Grenier set up one of South Plainfield’s first-half touchdowns with an interception. Johnny Chillemi recorded four tackles for a loss, while teammates Malik Cisson and Kevin Adams each had a sack for the Tigers.
South Plainfield has qualified for the North 2 Group III playoffs and will likely play a first-round game on the road.
The Panthers scored a late touchdown against the jayvee defense to produce the final margin.
A.L. Johnson 37, Delaware Valley 28: The Terriers led 28-23 in the fourth quarter until A.L. Johnson scored 14 unanswered points to take the victory.
Leading 30-28, Johnson converted a fourth-and-10 play for a touchdown with about four minutes left to play to make it a two possession game.
Chris Ambrose threw a pair of touchdown passes to Tim Bill in defeat for Delaware Valley (4-4), a 14 yard score in the second quarter and a 51 yard pass play in the third quarter.
Manville 20, Dayton 0: T.J. Caswell capped off a shutout victory by running in a fake punt from 40 yards out, lifting Manville (1-8) to its first victory of the season. The Mustangs jumped on top early when Kyle Puza plunged in from 2 yards out, but the score remained 7-0 until the fourth quarter. In the final period, Anthony Zuhone tossed a 60-yard touchdown pass to Max Miller before Caswell’s surprising score.
“I’m proud of the effort by the kids tonight,” Manville head coach Pat Gorbatuk said. “They could have thrown in the towel and started worrying about their winter sports or something else entirely, but they kept with it and finished the season on a high note.”
Brearley 34, Bound Brook 14: Arron Saavedra tossed a five-yard touchdown pass and Daniel Leinbach rushed for a five-yard score for Bound Brook (1-8). Both scores came in the first quarter as the Crusaders built a 14-7 lead, but the Brearley offense was too much to overcome.
Roselle Park 15, New Providence 13: Lining up for a potential game-winning field goal from 38 yards with three seconds left in the game, New Providence’s attempt was no good.
Ibn Nash ran for a 34 yard touchdown with 10:04 left in the fourth quarter for New Providence to make the score 15-13, but the Pioneers’ pass on a potential game-tying two-point conversion failed as they remained down by two points.
Matt McCann ran back a 67 yard interception return for a touchdown to put New Providecne ahead 7-0 with 6:50 remaining in the first quarter, and they led 7-2 at halftime after they had a snap go through the end zone late in the second quarter.
Roselle Park though took an 8-7 lead on a Jordan Andre 20-yard touchdown pass with 1:47 left in the first quarter (two-point attempt failed) and extended its lead to 15-7 shortly after heading to the fourth quarter.
New Providence will likely be the No. 5 seed in North 2 Group I with the loss, which will give them a trip to face No. 4 seed Secaucus. The Pioneers would have been the No. 3 seed and had a first-round home game had they won.
Cranford 28, North Plainfield 6: Ceisean Tucker-Grimes returned a fumble 45 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter for North Plainfield (3-5). The Canucks rushed for 142 yards as a team on 44 carries, but were done in by two fumbles and a pair of interceptions. Glenn Benson ran for 79 of the 142 yards for North Plainfield and Tucker-Grimes added 35 yards.
Pingry 17, Belvidere 14 (OT): Jake Greenberg booted a 32-yard field goal in overtime to lift Pingry (4-5).The Big Blue got the ball in overtime when Charie Muller picked off a pass and returned it into field goal range. Evan Key ran in a touchdown from four yards out to open the scoring for Pingry and Austin Schmidt hooked up with Kyle Walker for a 15-yard touchdown pass to tie the score in the fourth quarter. Key finished with 49 all-purpose yards on offense and recorded 13 tackles on defense, while Walker had 10 tackles for Pingry.