Boys Basketball: Balanced Effort Without Leading Scorer Leads Raiders Past Cranford

Jay Williams scored 10 points in his first career varsity start. Credits: Matt Kipp

SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD, NJ — Sans Tommy Drubulis, Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s leading scorer, the Raiders were in need of someone to step up during their conference game against Cranford Thursday night. 

Not one player in particular solely dominated the game, but Jay Williams (10 points), Lamont Cruse (11 points, 10 rebounds, five assists), Dwight Laylor (13 rebounds), and Ryan Muench (11 points) teamed up to carry the Raiders, whose star point guard watched from the bench while recovering from a stomach virus, to a 49-37 victory.

While the Raiders won by a smaller margin than they would’ve hoped against a one-win team, they remain undefeated (7-0) and won their third conference game to move into a virtual tie of first place with Rahway. 

Sign Up for E-News

On the heels of a career-high 22 points performance on Tuesday against Gov. Livingston, Lamont Cruse followed it up with another career milestone — his first double-double. Cruse grabbed five defensive and five offensive boards, while banking three field goals and converting five fouls shots. The senior helped ice the game by swishing two shots from the charity line with 29 seconds remaining. 

Joining Cruse on the backcourt was Jay Williams, a sophomore, who was making his first career varsity start in place of Drubulis. Six of Williams’ 10 points came in the first half, and he popped a huge three-pointer with one minute, 42 seconds remaining in the game, which gave his team some breathing room, extending the lead to three possessions (44-37). 26 seconds later, Williams came up with a huge block that prevented a would-be Cranford three point attempt. 

Sharpshooting Ryan Muench sunk a trifecta of three-pointers, and eight of his 11 points came in the first half. Dwight Laylor gave his team 14 different possessions with his 13 rebounds and one steal. 

To its credit, Cranford displayed scrappiness and looked much stronger than a one win, eight loss team. The Cougars were led by Jeremy Ruka, who connected on five three-pointers en route to a 15-point performance. 

Despite sitting in the Union County Conference Mountain Division’s basement, Cranford at one point late in the fourth quarter came within one possession of matching first place Scotch Plains-Fanwood. 

Scotch Plains-Fanwood controlled the lead for the entirety of the game, except for when Cranford jumped out to a 4-2 advantage one minute into play. 

It’s a quick turnaround for the Raiders, whose marathon week continues Friday evening with a 5:30 game against Roselle Park, the lone Group 1 team on SPF’s schedule. 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Scotch Plains/Fanwood

Westfield Family Continues ‘Summer of Kindness’ with Infant Clothing Drive

July 12, 2018

WESTFIELD, NJ — Westfield mom and teacher Sara Liptack is continuing her family’s “Summer of Kindess” with an infant clothing for Furniture Assist, an organization in Springfield that helps formerly homeless people, veterans, the elderly, fire victims, refugees and people fleeing domestic violence.

“I said, ‘What’s the one thing you really ...

It's Not What You Are Eating, It's What's Eating You


Emotional eating can be described as episodes of binge-eating, grazing and/or eating when not hungry to soothe feelings. Emotional eaters have a pattern of eating to cope with stress, emotional conflicts and problems of daily life.

Emotional eating is eating for reasons other than hunger. Instead of physical symptoms initiating the eating, ...

What Is Your Bottom Line?

This week's Parshah (Torah reading) is the Parshah of Pinchas the Zealot: the courageous young priest who stood up against idolatry and immorality and, in the end, saved Israel from a devastating plague.

While Pinchas' radical response made him a hero worthy of having a Torah section named after him, we wouldn't necessarily suggest to our children ...

State-Imposed Affordable Housing Requirements Will Lead to Overdevelopment in Scotch Plains

July 17, 2018

Dear Editor:

There will be a public hearing in Trenton concerning the affordable housing process on Wednesday, July 25, 2018 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the State House Annex (131-137 W State St, Trenton, NJ 08608) in Committee Room 16 on the 4th floor.

This hearing is hosted by the Assembly Housing and Community Development Committee, and the Committee will receive ...

When to Dial 911: Scotch Plains Rescue Squad Tip of the Month

July 10, 2018

There are many times you should call 911. If you or someone around you is in true medical distress, such as experiencing difficulty breathing, chest pains, bleeding, possible stroke, or any other serious health issues, then 911 should be called as soon as possible. If there are wires down, fire, a crime in progress, or other dangerous conditions to people or property, call 911 ...

Caring Contact Volunteer Listener Training Fall 2018

July 18, 2018

WESTFIELD, NJ -- Have you ever been told you are a good listener? Do you have a yearning to really make a difference? Become a Caring and Crisis Hotline Listener.

You could save a life.

Volunteers receive 52 hours of comprehensive training in active listening, Mental Health First Aid and Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training.  You also are supported by ...

Upcoming Events


Mon, July 23, 8:00 PM

Scotch Plains Public Library, Scotch Plains

View the Night Sky at the Scotch Plains Public ...

Arts & Entertainment Education


Wed, July 25, 6:00 PM

JCC of Central NJ, Scotch Plains

The JCC’s Barracudas Swim Team Meet the Coaches ...



Wed, July 25, 7:00 PM


Downtown Westfield 5K & Pizza Extravaganza