CLARK, NJ – The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Raiders girls’ soccer team will play for a 2016 Union County title, as they defeated the Cranford Cougars by a score of 3-0 Friday at A.L. Johnson (Clark) High School to advance to the championship game.
Getting the Raiders’ night started was Kerri McNeely, a junior, who netted the game’s first goal in the 23rd minute of the first half.
“I think we were dominating in the beginning of the game and getting that goal really helped us to move forward in the game, and then to eventually score more goals,” McNeely said after the victory. The goal was her team-leading 15th of the season.
Less than two minutes into the second half, the Raiders expanded their lead, when Gina Fahrenholz’ shot on goal off of a cross went into a scrum of players and bounced into the net. In the waning minutes of the game, Providence-bound Christina Rodgers put the icing on the cake for Scotch Plains, netting her 11th goal of the season to give the Raiders a 3-0 lead.
“I think the one that sealed it – Christina [Rodgers] scoring the third goal – was very nice,” Raiders Head Coach Kevin Ewing said.
The Raiders (13-0-3) controlled most of the game, holding Cranford (8-8-1) to just four shots on goal.
“The kids are really strong, we play a possession-style game, and that’s what helped us. Cranford plays a little more direct, and we were able to possess it,” Ewing said.
Scotch Plains' goalie Andrea Leitner saved four shots, while Cranford's Cam Hay saved seven.
With the victory, the Raiders will play for their seventh straight title in the Union County championship game next Friday, Oct. 28, at Kean University in Union.
“We have been there two times already and we can’t wait to go back. We’re really looking forward to it,” Christina Rodgers said.