HRT - Hormone Replacement Therapy in Mountain Lakes, NJ

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What Causes Menopause?

The most common reason for menopause is the natural decline in a female's reproductive hormones. However, menopause can also result from the following situations:

Oophorectomy: This surgery, which removes a woman's ovaries, causes immediate menopause. Symptoms and signs of menopause in this situation can be severe, as the hormonal changes happen abruptly.

Chemotherapy: Cancer treatments like chemotherapy can induce menopause quickly, causing symptoms to appear shortly after or even during treatment.

Ovarian Insufficiency: Also called premature ovarian failure, this condition is essentially premature menopause. It happens when a woman's ovaries quit functioning before the age of 40 and can stem from genetic factors and disease. Only 1% of women suffer from premature menopause, but HRT can help protect the heart, brain, and bones.

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Depression

If you're a woman going through menopause and find that you have become increasingly depressed, you're not alone. It's estimated that 15% of women experience depression to some degree while going through menopause. What many women don't know is that depression can start during perimenopause, or the years leading up to menopause.

Depression can be hard to diagnose, especially during perimenopause and menopause. However, if you notice the following signs, it might be time to speak with a physician:

  • Mood Swings
  • Inappropriate Guilt
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Too Much or Too Little Sleep
  • Lack of Interest in Life
  • Overwhelming Feelings

Remember, if you're experiencing depression, you're not weak or broken - you're going through a very regular emotional experience. The good news is that with proper treatment from your doctor, depression isn't a death sentence. And with HRT and anti-aging treatment for women, depression could be the catalyst you need to enjoy a new lease on life.

 HRT For Women Mountain Lakes, NJ

Hot Flashes

Hot flashes - they're one of the most well-known symptoms of menopause. Hot flashes are intense, sudden feelings of heat across a woman's upper body. Some last second, while others last minutes, making them incredibly inconvenient and uncomfortable for most women.

Symptoms of hot flashes include:

  • Sudden, Overwhelming Feeling of Heat
  • Anxiety
  • High Heart Rate
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness

Typically, hot flashes are caused by a lack of estrogen. Low estrogen levels negatively affect a woman's hypothalamus, the part of the brain that controls body temperature and appetite. Low estrogen levels cause the hypothalamus to incorrectly assume the body is too hot, dilating blood vessels to increase blood flow. Luckily, most women don't have to settle for the uncomfortable feelings that hot flashes cause. HRT treatments for women often stabilize hormones, lessening the effects of hot flashes and menopause in general.

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Mood Swings

Mood swings are common occurrences for most people - quick shifts from happy to angry and back again, triggered by a specific event. And while many people experience mood swings, they are particularly common for women going through menopause. That's because, during menopause, the female's hormones are often imbalanced. Hormone imbalances and mood swings go hand-in-hand, resulting in frequent mood changes and even symptoms like insomnia.

The rate of production of estrogen, a hormone that fluctuates during menopause, largely determines the rate of production the hormone serotonin, which regulates mood, causing mood swings.

Luckily, HRT and anti-aging treatments in Mountain Lakes, NJ for women work wonders for mood swings by regulating hormone levels like estrogen. With normal hormone levels, women around the world are now learning that they don't have to settle for mood swings during menopause.

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Weight Gain

Staying fit and healthy is hard for anyone living in modern America. However, for women with hormone imbalances during perimenopause or menopause, weight gain is even more serious. Luckily, HRT treatments for women coupled with a physician-led diet can help keep weight in check. But which hormones need to be regulated?

  • Estrogen: During menopause, estrogen levels are depleted. As such, the body must search for other sources of estrogen. Because estrogen is stored in fat, your body believes it should increase fat production during menopause. Estrogen also plays a big part in insulin resistance, which can make it even harder to lose weight and keep it off.
  • Progesterone: Progesterone levels are also depleted during menopause. Progesterone depletion causes bloating and water retention, while loss of testosterone limits the body's ability to burn calories.
  • Ongoing Stress: Stress makes our bodies think that food is hard to come by, putting our bodies in "survival mode". When this happens, cortisol production is altered. When cortisol timing changes, the energy in the bloodstream is diverted toward making fat. With chronic stress, this process repeatedly happens, causing extensive weight gain during menopause.
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Low Libido

Lowered sexual desire - three words most men and women hate to hear. Unfortunately, for many women in perimenopausal and menopausal states, it's just a reality of life. Thankfully, today, HRT and anti-aging treatments Mountain Lakes, NJ can help women maintain a normal, healthy sex drive. But what causes low libido in women, especially as they get older?

The hormones responsible for low libido in women are progesterone, estrogen, and testosterone.

Progesterone production decreases during perimenopause, causing low sex drive in women. Lower progesterone production can also cause chronic fatigue, weight gain, and other symptoms. On the other hand, lower estrogen levels during menopause lead to vaginal dryness and even vaginal atrophy or loss of muscle tension.

Lastly, testosterone plays a role in lowered libido. And while testosterone is often grouped as a male hormone, it contributes to important health and regulatory functionality in women. A woman's testosterone serves to heighten sexual responses and enhances orgasms. When the ovaries are unable to produce sufficient levels of testosterone, it often results in a lowered sex drive.

 Hormone Replacement Mountain Lakes, NJ

Vaginal Dryness

Often uncomfortable and even painful, vaginal dryness is a serious problem for sexually active women. However, like hair loss in males, vaginal dryness is very common - almost 50% of women suffer from it during menopause.

Getting older is just a part of life, but that doesn't mean you have to settle for the side effects. HRT and anti-aging treatments for women correct vaginal dryness by re-balancing estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone. When supplemented with diet and healthy living, your vagina's secretions are normalized, causing discomfort to recede.

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Fibroids

Uterine fibroids - they're perhaps the least-known symptom of menopause and hormone imbalances in women. That's because these growths on the uterus are often symptom-free. Unfortunately, these growths can be cancerous, presenting a danger for women as they age.

Many women will have fibroids at some point. Because they're symptomless, they're usually found during routine doctor exams. Some women only get one or two, while others may have large clusters of fibroids. Because fibroids are usually caused by hormone imbalances, hysterectomies have been used as a solution, forcing women into early menopause.

Advances in HRT and anti-aging medicine for women give females a safer, non-surgical option without having to experience menopause early. At Global Life Rejuvenation, our expert physicians will implement a customized HRT program to stabilize your hormones and reduce the risk of cancerous fibroid growth.

 HRT For Men Mountain Lakes, NJ

Endometriosis

Endometriosis symptoms are much like the effects of PMS, and include pelvic pain, fatigue, cramping, and bloating. While doctors aren't entirely sure what causes this painful, uncomfortable condition, most agree that hormones - particularly xenoestrogens - play a factor.

Endometriosis symptoms are much like the effects of PMS and include pelvic pain, fatigue, cramping, and bloating. While doctors aren't entirely sure what causes this painful, uncomfortable condition, most agree that hormones - particularly xenoestrogens - play a factor.

Xenoestrogen is a hormone that is very similar to estrogen. Too much xenoestrogen is thought to stimulate endometrial tissue growth. HRT for women helps balance these hormones and, when used with a custom nutrition program, can provide relief for women across the U.S.

 Sermorelin Mountain Lakes, NJ

What is Sermorelin?

Sermorelin is a synthetic hormone peptide, like GHRH, which triggers the release of growth hormones. When used under the care of a qualified physician, Sermorelin can help you lose weight, increase your energy levels, and help you feel much younger.

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Benefits of Sermorelin

Human growth hormone (HGH) therapy has been used for years to treat hormone deficiencies. Unlike HGH, which directly replaces declining human growth hormone levels, Sermorelin addresses the underlying cause of decreased HGH, stimulating the pituitary gland naturally. This approach keeps the mechanisms of growth hormone production active.

  • Benefits of Sermorelin include:
  • Better Immune Function
  • Improved Physical Performance
  • More Growth Hormone Production
  • Less Body Fat
  • Build More Lean Muscle
  • Better Sleep
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What is Ipamorelin?

Ipamorelin helps to release growth hormones in a person's body by mimicking a peptide called ghrelin. Ghrelin is one of three hormones which work together to regulate the growth hormone levels released by the pituitary gland. Because Ipamorelin stimulates the body to produce growth hormone, your body won't stop its natural growth hormone production, which occurs with synthetic HGH.

Ipamorelin causes growth hormone secretion that resembles natural release patterns rather than being constantly elevated from HGH. Because ipamorelin stimulates the natural production of growth hormone, our patients can use this treatment long-term with fewer health risks.

Hormone Replacement Therapy Mountain Lakes, NJ

Benefits of Ipamorelin

One of the biggest benefits of Ipamorelin is that it provides significant short and long-term benefits in age management therapies. Ipamorelin can boost a patient's overall health, wellbeing, and outlook on life.

When there is an increased concentration of growth hormone by the pituitary gland, there are positive benefits to the body. Some benefits include:

  • Powerful Anti-Aging Properties
  • More Muscle Mass
  • Less Unsightly Body Fat
  • Deep, Restful Sleep
  • Increased Athletic Performance
  • More Energy
  • Less Recovery Time for Training Sessions and Injuries
  • Enhanced Overall Wellness and Health
  • No Significant Increase in Cortisol

Your New, Youthful Lease on Life with HRT for Women

Whether you are considering our HRT and anti-aging treatments for women in Mountain Lakes, NJ, we are here to help. The first step to reclaiming your life begins by contacting Global Life Rejuvenation. Our friendly, knowledgeable HRT experts can help answer your questions and walk you through our procedures. From there, we'll figure out which treatments are right for you. Before you know it, you'll be well on your way to looking and feeling better than you have in years!

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Latest News in Mountain Lakes, NJ

Mountain Lakes football finishes the job, beats Glassboro for Group 1 state title

PISCATAWAY – Marco Dzamba traces this season’s version of the Mountain Lakes football team all the way back to the third grade.At that time, the senior two-way standout and most of his elementary-school teammates started playing organized football. That team scored on its first play, never scored again, and didn’t win a single game the rest of the season.Since then, a lot has happened. Dzamba and Mountain Lakes are now on a whole other level.A year after coming up short in New Jersey's fi...

PISCATAWAY – Marco Dzamba traces this season’s version of the Mountain Lakes football team all the way back to the third grade.

At that time, the senior two-way standout and most of his elementary-school teammates started playing organized football. That team scored on its first play, never scored again, and didn’t win a single game the rest of the season.

Since then, a lot has happened. Dzamba and Mountain Lakes are now on a whole other level.

A year after coming up short in New Jersey's first-ever state championship game, the Herd’s return to the Group 1 title game at Rutgers' SHI Stadium yielded the Morris County school its first state title with a 24-6 win over Glassboro on Sunday.

“It’s amazing. I’m so proud and happy of all the boys who made a deal at the beginning of the season and a first meeting back in June that we’re going to get back to this point after last year’s loss. We did exactly that. There’s no better way to end your high school career than this,” Dzamba said. “After last year, we made a promise to ourselves. I can’t stress that enough that this year’s team was not going to have that same feeling again of losing on this field, under the lights and the big stage and everything.

“This was all our hard work throughout the season. This game was a culmination of the all the football we’ve been playing since third grade together and it truly shined on the big stage.”

Dzamba was the best player on the field Sunday in his final high school game. He finished with nine tackles (five solo), a sack, a blocked punt, two forced fumbles, an interception and a defensive touchdown.

The linebacker was one of four players to score for the Herd. He forced a fumble on a Glassboro punt at the 7-yard line, then recovered it in the end zone with 10:21 left in the game. That put the Herd up 16-0 and put the game out of reach.

“This group was on a mission. We hugged that day and said 'we’ll be back.' You say, but you don’t know if it’s ever really going to happen as it’s so much stuff to really get back here. But the kids really believed that,” Mountain Lakes coach Darrell Fusco said. “When the playoffs started, we found a different level. They’ve been just outstanding every week. Our defense was outstanding. Our kids just believed from day one. They really felt we were going to get back here and we said if we get back here we were going to make sure we enjoyed the trip.”

Aidan Malnati opened the scoring for Mountain Lakes when he barreled in from the 1-yard line to cap a three-play drive with 6:50 left in the first quarter. Malnati’s touchdown was set up when he recovered a punt blocked by Dzamba at their own 17-yard line.

Kicker Matt Shertzer added to the lead when he nailed a 27-yard field goal with :47 left in the third quarter for a 10-0 lead.

Senior Justin Hernando closed out the Herd’s scoring on a 12-yard run with 3:18 left to play.

What it means

Mountain Lakes is the NJSIAA Group 1 state champion for the first time in program history. The Herd are the first Morris County team in history to win a state title in any group.

Mountain Lakes closes out the season at 11-2 and won five straight games on the way to the title.

“As soon as we lost the game last year, we had a lot of juniors playing in that game, we all said we’re going to get back here next year. Obviously, that was a long ways away,” senior two-way lineman and Penn commit Cosmo Fusco said. “We put in all the work that we needed to do, won the game we needed to win. No better feeling than getting that promise done.”

Glassboro, playing in its first state final, had its six-game win streak snapped and finishes the season with a 9-4 mark. The South Jersey school, made up of mostly underclassmen and several freshman and sophomores in the starting lineup, is expected to be a team to watch in the coming years.

Inside the numbers

Running back Ian Redzepagic rushed for a game-high 64 yards on 12 carries for Mountain Lakes.

Hernando rushed for 41 yards on 15 carries.

Mountain Lakes outrushed Glassboro 99-41 and amassed 194 total yards compared to the Bulldogs’ 132.

Glassboro receiver Xavier Sabb had five receptions for 99 yards.

Quarterback Kristopher Foster threw for a game-high 153 yards on 11-of-18 and a touchdown for Glassboro.

Damere Lassiter scored the lone touchdown for Glassboro, a 37-yard reception in the fourth quarter.

Final words

“It’s unreal. As a kid, I watched every Herd game. Watched my dad [Darrell Fusco] play and always dreamed of playing for him. It’s a better experience than anything. Obviously senior year to win our first state championship is a perfect ending. We’ve been playing together since third grade and always dreamed of playing in high school. We finally got here and got it done.” – Cosmo Fusco.

“It was a big difference being here last year. I thought last year we were a little bit on fumes after the game we played against Weequahic. We had a different approach coming here. The kids were zoned in and knew what to expect. Everyone wants to play at MetLife [Stadium], but we lost here and this was part of the mission to come back to Rutgers.” – Darrell Fusco.

Mountain Lakes football repeats as sectional champion with win over Hawthorne

Special to DailyRecord.comHAWTHORNE - At 6-foot-1, it’s probably unfair to call Mountain Lakes tight end Marco Dzamba a secret weapon.But when you’re a team that spends the majority of the time running the ball like the Herd with their Wing-T offense, Dzamba can get lost in the mix.The senior shattered his career high in receiving yards in just the first half with 122 yards and a pair of touchdowns as Mountain Lakes defeated Hawthorne, 35-14, to win the North 1 Group 1 title Friday night....

Special to DailyRecord.com

HAWTHORNE - At 6-foot-1, it’s probably unfair to call Mountain Lakes tight end Marco Dzamba a secret weapon.

But when you’re a team that spends the majority of the time running the ball like the Herd with their Wing-T offense, Dzamba can get lost in the mix.

The senior shattered his career high in receiving yards in just the first half with 122 yards and a pair of touchdowns as Mountain Lakes defeated Hawthorne, 35-14, to win the North 1 Group 1 title Friday night.

The Herd, who captured their second straight sectional championship, will play North 2 victor Shabazz, which toppled Butler, 40-13, in the Group 1 semifinal next weekend.

“They were putting guys in the box and we had to get the ball to 89 (Dzamba),” Mountain Lakes coach Darrell Fusco said. “He’s a difference maker and you just can’t let him be. On any other team, he’d have a ton of targets.”

Dzamba was wide open for a 15-yard touchdown grab with 7:19 left in the first quarter. Herd quarterback Ben Miniter, who also had a career-best 204 yards in the opening half, unleashed a long toss along the right sideline to a streaking Dzamba with 2:24 left for the second score before halftime to start a string of three consecutive touchdowns for Mountain Lakes.

“When Coach Fusco calls that play, I smile each time,” the selfless Dzamba said. “We practice that play so many times, and I always end up open. But I’ll do whatever we need to do to win.”

Mountain Lakes used a pair of third quarter rushing touchdowns by Carson Fitch, including a 63-yard jaunt just 68 second into the half to extend the team’s lead at 28-14.

Hawthorne’s offense abandoned its running game and became flustered by constant pressure by Mountain Lakes’ defensive front. Cosmo Fusco had a pair of sacks as Bears quarterback Tyler Menne (18-for-34 passing for 248 yards, 1 TD and 1 INT) led his team past the Herd 43-yard line only once in the second half.

“We let up a few big plays in the first half but made some corrections and did what we needed to do,” Cosmo Fusco said. “This has been like a dream to be part of this but we’re not done yet and have a lot more left to accomplish.”

It was either feast or famine for the Mountain Lakes offense in the first half. The Herd scored on their first two possessions and then went three-and-out before Dzamba hauled in the 67-yard touchdown grab, giving Mountain Lakes a 20-14 advantage at the break.

Hawthorne maintained pace with Menne scoring on a 1-yard quarterback keeper and finding Dominic Passero on a 48-yard catch and run to account for the Bears’ first half scoring. But the Bears failed to get off to a strong start as they had in their two prior playoff victories, grabbing a 14-12 lead but losing it in the third quarter.

What it means

Mountain Lakes (9-2) claimed its ninth sectional crown since the current playoff format started in 1974. The victory gives Mountain Lakes its third straight win and sixth win in its last seven games. Mountain Lakes, which qualified for its second straight Group 1 semifinal, is undefeated in three meetings against Hawthorne - all occurring in the postseason.

Hawthorne, which finished its season at 8-3, notched the program’s highest win total since going 8-2 in 2015. The Bears had their four-game winning streak snapped.

Football news:West Morris football shocks Old Tappan with comeback win in sectional final

Key play

Nursing a six-point halftime advantage, Mountain Lakes received the ball in the second half, which went from the Dzamba Show to the Carson Fitch Show.

On second-and-10, Fitch took the handoff and found a massive hole created by senior linemen William Tate and Samson Veech. The 5-10 sophomore charged along the left sideline for a critical touchdown just 68 seconds into the second half. Fitch amassed 127 of his game-high 130 yards after halftime.

Hawthorne never recovered from the score as the Bears had two turnovers and a pair of fourth down conversions that went awry in the defeat.

By the numbers

? Miniter’s 204 yards in the first half was 70 yards more than his previous career best - a 134 yard performance in a win against Kinnelon on Oct. 27.

? Mountain Lakes allowed zero second half points for the victory. The Herd have held eight opponents to 14 points or less this season.

Game balls

? Dzamba, who entered the game with 440 receiving yards, had three catches for 122 yards and a pair of touchdowns and a sack on defense for Mountain Lakes.

? Cosmo Fusco registered a pair of sacks and two more tackles for a loss for the Herd.

? Matthew Lorper had seven catches for 88 yards to pace Hawthorne.

They said it

“We knew they got off to fast starts, but once we got comfortable, we locked them down for the rest of the game,” - Dzamba, who is heading to Dartmouth College to play lacrosse.

“Shabazz is going to be a handful for us, but we’re glad to be getting a home game,” Coach Fusco said.

Up next

? Mountain Lakes (9-2) hosts Shabazz in a Group 1 semi-final next weekend.

? Hawthorne (8-3) concludes its season.

Inside Mountain Lakes football's dominant effort to get playoff win over Kinnelon

MOUNTAIN LAKES — Quarterback Ben Miniter threw for three touchdowns and rushed for another as Mountain Lakes, the No. 4 seed in North 1, Group 1, routed No. 5 seed Kinnelon, 48-21, in Friday's sectional quarterfinals."The regular season was past us and we were all focused on Kinnelon," Miniter said. "It's nice to see it all come together and have something we built towards."Mountain Lakes opened the night with a five play, 60 yard scoring drive capped by Jordan Hernando's two-yard touchd...

MOUNTAIN LAKES — Quarterback Ben Miniter threw for three touchdowns and rushed for another as Mountain Lakes, the No. 4 seed in North 1, Group 1, routed No. 5 seed Kinnelon, 48-21, in Friday's sectional quarterfinals.

"The regular season was past us and we were all focused on Kinnelon," Miniter said. "It's nice to see it all come together and have something we built towards."

Mountain Lakes opened the night with a five play, 60 yard scoring drive capped by Jordan Hernando's two-yard touchdown run. Later in the quarter, Miniter found Marco Dzamba for a 47-yard touchdown pass to give Mountain Lakes a 14-0 lead with 4:18 left in the first quarter. Kinnelon would respond and find the scoreboard to begin the second quarter as Zach Grande kept for a two yard touchdown run to cut the lead to 14-7 with 11:18 left in the half.

Miniter would roll out and score on a 22-yard touchdown run to regain a two touchdown lead. After a Carson Fitch touchdown run later in the second quarter, Miniter found Dzamba again for a 58-yard touchdown pass and a 34-7 lead. Kinnelon wouls score in the final seconds of the half on a Grande touchdown pass to Matt Goldstein from 14 yards out.

Mountain Lakes would continue the pressure in the second half, forcing interceptions on consecutive Kinnelon plays leading to a touchdown pass to Justin Brennfleck and a second touchdown run for Fitch. Kinnelon would complete the scoring with Grande's second rushing touchdown of the night making it 48-21 with 6:00 left.

Mountain Lakes (7-2) travels to top seed Park Ridge (7-2) in next week's sectional semifinals. Kinnelon's season is complete with a record of 5-4.

What it means

Last season's Group 1 runner-up moves on to the sectional semifinal but if the Herd want to be successful again, they'll have to do it in a different way. In all of the playoff tradition at Mountain Lakes, the Herd have never won a sectional title seeded outside of the top two spots in the bracket. With the top four seeds all winning Friday, Mountain Lakes is the lowest remaining seed in next week's North 1, Group 1 semifinals.

Mountain Lakes also continued its historic dominance over longtime rival Kinnelon. An old annual encounter that was a Thanksgiving day tradition for a time, the Herd extended its win streak in the series to 23 in a row with a victory on Friday night. Kinnelon last defeated Mountain Lakes back in 1996.

Key plays

With a 34-14 lead beginning the third quarter, Mountain Lakes nearly put this game to bed with its opening drive of the second half. After a fourth down stop by Kinnelon, momentum appeared to be shifting towards the Colts when they took over inside their own red zone. However, a fumble on the first play of the ensuing drive was recovered by Cosmo Fusco and would lead to a Mountain Lakes touchdown, negating a momentum shift.

"Turnovers were a big part of the discussion in practice this week," said Fusco. "It brings a lot of energy and you can do a lot with it. We turned that energy into points tonight."

After kicking the ball back to Kinnelon, a Sebastian Borie interception on the first play of the next drive gave the Herd defense turnovers on consecutive plays with touchdowns resulting from both turnovers.

Game ball

Marco Dzamba has been known for his defensive prowess, but the senior has shined on both sides of the ball. On Friday, two long touchdown grabs gave Dzamba his first multi-touchdown performance and a career-high 115 yards receiving. Dzamba dealt with injury early in the season and has eased himself back into more snaps on both sides of the ball to make the biggest impact for his senior season.

"It wasn't easy, but it came with a lot of support from my coaches and my teammates," Fusco said. "They paced my return and ultimately I feel great now. Being out here on a Friday night and able to do whatever I can for a win was always the goal."

Dzamba also sacked Kinnelon quarterback Zach Grande, who was held to just 81 yards passing.

They said it

"For all of the seniors, it was a huge night for us. It's our last time coming out on this turf and we wanted to come out flying and we did just that." - Dzamba.

"We won all our games last year here and won our title on this field. We're comfortable here and walking down the path in front of our fans. Now we get to focus on the challenge of taking on a top seed and trying to be road warriors." - Darrell Fusco.

Mountain Lakes football headed back to sectional final after holding off Park Ridge

PARK RIDGE – Bradley Rodgers was saved by a taped-up ankle and a little bit of luck.A game-time decision made the game-sealing play on Friday night.The Mountain Lakes linebacker picked off a pass with under two minutes left, helping the fourth seed knock off No. 1 Park Ridge, 21-14, in the North 1, Group 1 football semifinals.The Herd averaged more than five yards per carry with a Wing-T offense that shortened the game and wore down the Owls.But the fact that Rodgers was the one to clinch thei...

PARK RIDGE – Bradley Rodgers was saved by a taped-up ankle and a little bit of luck.

A game-time decision made the game-sealing play on Friday night.

The Mountain Lakes linebacker picked off a pass with under two minutes left, helping the fourth seed knock off No. 1 Park Ridge, 21-14, in the North 1, Group 1 football semifinals.

The Herd averaged more than five yards per carry with a Wing-T offense that shortened the game and wore down the Owls.

But the fact that Rodgers was the one to clinch their championship berth against Hawthorne seemed unlikely on Thursday afternoon. Coach Darrell Fusco said the junior wasn't able to walk after tweaking his ankle at the end of practice.

"His dad, we're now calling him Dr. Rodgers," Fusco said. "He's not a doctor, but he iced him all day and got him ready. Just a great play to put the game away. And to fall down [at the 4] was tremendous. I don't think that was on purpose."

Park Ridge had used all three timeouts by the time Rodgers intercepted a pass near midfield and darted down the left sideline. And by getting tackled near the goal-line, Rodgers was able to let his team kneel out the last 1:53. Whether the final sequence was planned was in the eye of the beholder.

"Not necessarily," Rodgers said before changing course. "But now that I'm thinking about it, yeah."

What it means

Mountain Lakes (8-2) is heading back to the sectional final with a chance at its second straight title and the third in a decade. Hawthorne will host the title game on its home grass as the third seed.

Park Ridge finished the season at 7-3.

"I'm just proud of our kids," Fusco said. "This is a tough team to beat. [Park Ridge QB Cole Hughes] is a touchdown waiting to happen, as you saw. To go on the road is tough. It's an hour bus-ride and tonight we have no locker room. We're in a tent. Our kids just handled all of it."

Inside the game

There was no question about what the Mountain Lakes offense wanted to do, but no easy way to stop it. The Herd ran the ball on 47 of their 50 offensive plays with fullback Carson Fitch and running backs Jordan Hernando and Ian Redzepagic sharing the load.

Fitch churned out 135 yards, including the winning touchdown late in the third quarter. A bloodied forearm and bandaged wrist showed the toll of his physical running style.

"It's amazing," Fitch said. "We have three great backs and we all push as hard as we can. It's all hustle."

Mountain Lakes went up on its opening possesson on a short play-action touchdown pass to Fitch. It was the Herd's only pass on an 11-play drive.

"The way you stop our Wing-T is bring a lot of bodies," Fusco said. "We knew we had an opportunity if we bootlegged."

Redzepagic added 12 carries for 57 yards and a touchdown for Mountain Lakes.

Park Ridge scored on runs by Luke Macfie (1 yard) and Hughes, who turned a Tush Push into a 62-yard run.

"That can break you in a game, but our kids came back and scored right after," Fusco said. "Our kids just kept finding a way. I'm so proud of the group."

Mountain Lakes girls soccer captures third Group 1 title in four years

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP — Daisy Duda joked that she's selfish. The Mountain Lakes junior refused to give up the NJSIAA Group 1 girls soccer trophy. She called it the team's baby, which "left home and it came back to us."The Lakers defeated Point Pleasant Beach for the second year in a row to capture their third NJSIAA title in four seasons.Mountain Lakes started its dynasty by beating Shore Regional in 2019, then won the Northwest A COVID-tinged championship. The Lakers lost to Shore in Group 1 in 2021,...

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP — Daisy Duda joked that she's selfish. The Mountain Lakes junior refused to give up the NJSIAA Group 1 girls soccer trophy. She called it the team's baby, which "left home and it came back to us."

The Lakers defeated Point Pleasant Beach for the second year in a row to capture their third NJSIAA title in four seasons.

Mountain Lakes started its dynasty by beating Shore Regional in 2019, then won the Northwest A COVID-tinged championship. The Lakers lost to Shore in Group 1 in 2021, before rebounding to defeat Point Beach, 5-1, last fall.

"It's the best feeling in the world," said Duda, part of a trio of juniors – with Abby Hawes and Maya Ritchie – Mountain Lakes coach Sean Maurizi dubbed the Strike Force.

The Lakers' Strike Force came through on Sunday. Hawes scored twice, and Ritchie once, with Duda delivering three assists.

As Point Beach scored on a deflection 10 minutes into the second half, Hawes recalled the Group 1 final freshman year, when Mountain Lakes squandered a 2-0 lead and lost in overtime. She added an insurance goal with less than two minutes to play, then the trio subbed out together and started the Lakers' celebration.

"I can't believe that just happened," said Hawes, who led Mountain Lakes with 17 goals. "We have so many new people. A lot of girls, it's the first varsity sport they've ever played. It's something completely new for them. It's so exciting that I get to experience it with them, and we all get to experience it together."

Long road back to glory

After graduating 17 seniors, Mountain Lakes (15-7) felt like an underdog. A 7-2 season-opening loss to Madison didn't help change attitudes, at least on the outside.

But the young Lakers believed in each other. The five veterans brought their new teammates into the tradition Maurizi has been trying to build since coming over from Briarcliff Middle School. He started cultivating talent in the Mountain Lakes/Boonton Township youth program, bringing them up through a shared system.

The Lakers end the season with wins in nine of their last 10, after a first-round loss in the Morris County Tournament. They have won six in a row.

"At our last practice, I said for all the freshmen, I knew how it felt. It's the worst feeling in the world to lose a final," Duda said. "To experience it last year, it's the best ever. With our new team, I was so hyped to be able to let these new teammates experience it. It's such a high."

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