Sports

Boys Soccer: Scotch Plains-Fanwood Outlasts Summit 5-4 in Shootout Thriller

80fd8b6700df90c72ced_IMG_9736.jpg
Raiders' fans storm the field after Ari Rosenzweig nets the sixth penalty shot for Scotch Plains-Fanwood. Credits: Michael Bruchert
335e3b677aa8fe17f750_IMG_9654.jpg
Brian McManus dribbles in the midfield against Summit. Credits: Michael Bruchert
b56ea7b5b8e4c9341582_IMG_9670.jpg
Zach Cimring takes a shot past Summit's Luke Mahoney. Credits: Michael Bruchert
9142d23c0a7eb7ea0b82_IMG_9700.jpg
Raider Nation celebrates the tying goal late in the second half. Credits: Michael Bruchert
ef6168d891b96146eb00_IMG_9705.jpg
Ari Rosenzweig attempts to dribble past Griffin Wyckoff. Credits: Michael Bruchert
c29d156a14db06ba66eb_IMG_9715.jpg
Jake Longo (4) unsuccessfully heads a shot towards the net in overtime. Credits: Michael Bruchert
fdd71157575edf2f84c2_IMG_9722.jpg
Sean Murray's teammates refer to him as "The Silent Killer." Credits: Michael Bruchert
ef2e2c1d4f592f5cc3d8_IMG_9729.jpg
Peter Guadagno returns to midfield after missing the sudden death penalty kick. Credits: Michael Bruchert
80fd8b6700df90c72ced_IMG_9736.jpg

CLARK, NJ – Both Summit and Scotch Plains-Fanwood fans were kept on the edge of their seats on Saturday night, as the Hilltoppers and the Raiders boys soccer teams squared off in the Union County Tournament semifinal round.

Summit came into the matchup having defeated Roselle, Roselle Park, and Plainfield in the tournament’s previous rounds, while the Raiders earned first and second round byes and punched their semifinal ticket with a 5-0 win over Johnson last weekend.

The two teams met just once this season on Sept. 15, when Scotch Plains-Fanwood mounted a two-goal comeback in the second half to beat Summit 2-1.

Sign Up for E-News

Saturday’s matchup was an all too familiar scenario for the Raiders, as they failed to secure a lead until the game’s end. After a scoreless first half, Jafeth Reyes broke the tie just nine minutes into the second half, putting Summit ahead 1-0.

The Hilltoppers towering defense held the Raiders in check despite Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s ability to dominate time of possession.

With just two minutes to go in regulation, Summit buckled under the pressure and opened the door wide open for their opponent by tripping Brian McManus inside the 18-yard box. The Raiders’ leading goal scorer, Ari Rosenzweig, converted the game-tying penalty kick to send the game into overtime, simultaneously sending the Summit crowd into shock.

Scotch Plains-Fanwood took advantage of their momentum heading into overtime, wreaking havoc on Summit goalkeeper Alex Dadourian by sending countless shots in his direction. Jake Longo, Jonathan Schwab, and Zach Halma each connected with the ball on separate occasions, but could not score.

After two scoreless ten minute overtime periods, the game was sent to a decisive penalty shootout.

In the best of five series, Summit looked to be victorious after Patrick Ellman’s shot was denied by Alex Dadourian. However, Zach Halma kept the Raiders alive with a conversion and left the game in the hands of Sean Murray, who needed a big stop to keep his team’s hopes alive.

“My coach told me I only needed to save one, and he was right,” Murray said. “I told Patrick Ellman, ‘I got you,’ because I knew he was upset after missing.”

“Sean is without a doubt the best goalkeeper in the county, there is no question about it,” Coach Breznitsky said afterward.

With a clutch save, Murray sent the shootout itself into sudden death, where both teams opted to send their captains to the hash mark.

All hope for Summit crumbled, however, when Peter Guadagno sent a shot soaring over the goal to open the door once again for Scotch Plains-Fanwood. The Raiders’ golden-footed Ari Rosenzweig delivered the final blow, beating Dadourian top right and electrifying the Raider Nation crowd.

“I guessed the wrong way and I saw the ball fly up over the crossbar and it was just a feeling of relief,” said Raiders’ goalkeeper Murray.

With a semifinal victory, Scotch Plains-Fanwood will advance to their fifth straight Union County Tournament final. The Raiders will play Elizabeth, who earned a spot by defeating Westfield on Saturday night in overtime.

Scotch Plains-Fanwood defeated Elizabeth 2-1 in their only matchup this season last week.

“We have to come out prepared no matter what team we are playing,” said Raiders’ captain Zach Halma.

The Union County Tournament Final is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 30 at Kean University (time TBA).

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: FEEDING YOUR FEELINGS

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 ...

Send a Message to Nick Scutari and His Cronies: Corruption Has No Place in Union County

July 19, 2018

Dear Editor:

The Union County Freeholders’ decision to appoint State Senator and newly-elected Union County Democratic Chairman, Nick Scutari’s chief of staff, Ed Oatman as County Manager smelled of corruption from the start.

To place a political consultant like Oatman in the role of overseeing 2,800 employees and running the day-to-day operations of the $500 million County ...

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 ...

Step Up and Build a Stronger Union County

July 19, 2018

UNION COUNTY, NJ -- Union County residents who are seeking a meaningful, high-impact way to volunteer in their community can sign up as a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Essex, Hudson and Union Counties.

The organization is currently seeking volunteer mentors for its best-known program, Community Based Mentoring. The program involves individual mentoring with a local child or teen, age ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_b3322a9af399ab00349f_nightsky

Mon, July 23, 8:00 PM

Scotch Plains Public Library, Scotch Plains

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

Arts & Entertainment Education

Carousel_image_99864111416f9af936dd_dsc_2436

Wed, July 25, 6:00 PM

JCC of Central NJ, Scotch Plains

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

Sports

Carousel_image_989b40b66144f89908a8_pizza_run

Wed, July 25, 7:00 PM

Westfield

Downtown Westfield 5K & Pizza Extravaganza

Sports