SPOTSWOOD, NJ - It was a Blue Division championship season for the Spotswood High School boys varsity soccer team. The Chargers finished tied for the Blue Division title with South Plainfield High School. It was the second title in four years for Spotswood and five of the players were noted for their stellar play on the soccer field this season. Senior Yanni Hatzistefanis made the All-GMC team. Hatzistefanis had 22 goals and 10 assists for the fall.
"Yanni had an incredible season," said Spotswood High School boys varsity soccer head Jeff Marvinny. "To earn All-GMC Honors is not only a testament to how good he was this season, but a culmination of four years of hard work to turn himself into this level of player. He scored big goals for us all year long, including four in the game that clinched the Blue Division title. His work ethic in training sets the tone for our entire team and his success is traced directly to that. He is a creative one v one player, but also has excellent vision and finds his teammates very well."
Four Chargers made the All-Blue Division team, including Chris Moran, Luke Tharney, Andrew Bishara and Brian Lumsden.
"Chris battled some injuries most of this season and he was the first name on the other coach's scouting reports so to have the type of production and impact he did with everyone game planning to stop him shows what type of player he is," Marvinny said of Moran. "He got healthy late in the year and really showed his abilities scoring six goals in the last five games including two goals against South River and one against Delaware Valley in states. He has tremendous pace and moves intelligently off the ball. He makes runs that defenders have problems trying to track. He is not tall, but with his pace and timing is still able to win balls in the air."
Moran finished the season with 14 goals and seven assists. Like Hatzistefanis, Moran was a four-year starter for the Chargers. Tharney, a junior, had seven goals and 10 assists for Spotswood.
"Since he was a freshman, I've thought that he may be the best center midfield player I have had in my 17 years," Marvinny said of Tharney. "He is a complete player. He controls the game offensively and defensively. He covers ground, wins balls in the air, keeps the ball under pressure, has excellent vision and a motor that doesn't stop. He also added more goals to his game this season, including the game winning goal at the South River night game and the near game winning goal against Delaware Valley on tremendous shots from distance."
Goalkeeper Bishara started every game for the Chargers this season and earned eight shutouts.
"Andrew has been one of the best goalies in the GMC for the past three years," Marvinny said about Bishara. "He is athletic, a superb shot stopper and good distributor of the ball. He is a leader and organizer of our defense. He does what all good goalies do and that is to stop potential problems from becoming problems with his reading of the game. His performance in the final game of the season was truly remarkable from saving a penalty kick to stopping three breakaways. He has been a two-year captain and will be a big loss to our program."
When Lumsden first started with the Chargers, the senior played mostly midfield and forward. This season, he made the switc
"When I spoke to Brian about becoming our center back," Marvinny said of Lumsden. "I told him I thought he had the ability to become an All-Division level defender. He was even better than I expected. He has all the physical attributes of a defender...size, speed, strength. He helped change us from a team that hasn't had many shutouts the past few years to a team that had eight. He reads the game well, wins tackles and can carry the ball or distribute out of the back. He became a vocal leader on the team as well. He is completely deserving of this honor."
The Blue Division champs completed the season with a 14-7-1 overall record.