By: Alex Melillo
SOMERVILLE, NJ – The Pioneers returned to the win column Friday night, defeating Governor Livingston 60-7. The win against the Highlanders clinched the Mid-State 38 Mountain Division title for the Pioneers for the second consecutive season.
Somerville came into the game with something to prove after losing their first game of the season last week against Rahway. And it was apparent immediately as the Pioneers jumped on the visiting Highlanders.
On the opening kickoff, Bobby Wortman's kick went untouched by a Highlanders player and was recovered by sophomore Steven Hrabinski. Ryan Kovacs and company would start their night on the Highlanders 19-yard line just seconds into the game.
After pounding the rock up the middle with Robert Fiorentino, Kovacs dropped back and found Da'Shaun Smith in the end zone for the 8-yard score. The two-point conversion made it 8-0 Pioneers with just over a minute gone by in the first.
Getting a fourth down stop, the Pioneer offense took over in the Highlanders half of the field for their second drive of the game. Again, establishing the run, Fiorentino drove up the middle for the touchdown making it an early 16-0 lead for the Pioneers.
Last score of the first came with 57 seconds left in the quarter. Jahaln Dabney took the snap and ran right, scoring the touchdown and making the Somerville lead 24-0.
The Pioneers scored two touchdowns in the second quarter, one on a 27-yard pass to Ciempola and the other on an 86-yard run from Dabney.
Governor Livingston scored their only points of the night late in the second quarter on a deep pass play down the far sideline.
The Pioneers scored three more times in the second half, highlighted by a touchdown in the third quarter from Ethan Hilliman. The tall sophomore wideout went up and snatched a pass in the back of the end zone for the touchdown, fighting through a pass interference by the Governor Livingston defender.
Final Score: Somerville- 60, Governor Livingston- 7.
Friday night's contest marked the last regular season home game for seniors Ryan Kovacs, Marcus Burnside, Ryan Pedrani, Owen Booker, Hamza Akel, Ryan Hrabinski, Michael Desarno, Thomas Malakio, Markus Lauber, and Raghava Sampath Kumar.
The Pioneers conclude the 2017 season with three straight road games, the first of which is next Friday, October 28, at Arthur L. Johnson High School. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for up-to-date information and stats. You can also see all of our post-game video content on our YouTube channel. Visit us at www.somervillefootball.com