SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ – The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Raiders controlled almost every aspect of the game Thursday afternoon, as they improved to 10-0 on the season with a 3-0 boys soccer victory over the Cranford Cougars.
The Raiders received a majority of their offense from senior Ryan Peterson, playing in his second game back from illness. Peterson scored the first two goals of the game, coming at the 32:00 minute mark in the first half and 20:00 minute mark in the second.
“We knew his impact when he missed the games,” Raiders head coach Tom Breznitsky said about his senior midfielder. “He’s back in two games, and he scores three goals. We’re very happy that he’s back.”
Perhaps the most positive aspect for SP-F was its control of possession, which resulted in the Raiders getting off 18 shots on goal, while Cranford was able to get off just one.
Scotch Plains began the game with a number of starters sitting, most notably John Murphy, Patrick Ellman and Andrew Murray.
“[That’s] one of the strengths of this team – the fact that we have depth; very good depth,” coach “Brez” stated after the game. “There was no game that we have used only 11 or 12 guys – it’s almost [always] 17, and that’s the strength we have.”
The game also featured an abundance of physical play, including numerous slide-tackles and a collision.
John Murphy gave the Raiders a third goal in the 31st minute of the second half to close out the day’s scoring. The goal was Murphy’s team-leading 10th goal of the season. Murphy, David Walker and Michael Ferrara each added assists.
Cranford goalie Andrew Rojo racked up 15 saves, while SP-F’s Sean Murray notched just one.
The Raiders are back in action Saturday, with a huge road contest against crosstown rival Westfield. They defeated Westfield, 2-1, on Sept. 10.