Boys soccer overcomes Summit in shootout thriller in UCT

Peter Warren

The Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School boys soccer team are the new comeback kids.
With the odds stacked against SPFHS more than once throughout the game, the second seeded Raiders showed adversity as they fought back to win the game 2-1 on penalty kicks.
Ari Rosenzweig scored the clinching penalty kick in the sixth round of the PK shootout after Summit’s PK taker missed the target.
Junior goalkeeper Sean Murray had made a game-saving save in the previous round when he blocked the potential game-winning kick.
“I was thinking ‘I know I have to save one’ and luckily I guessed the right way and got my hand down to the corner,” Murray said.
After Murray’s big save, senior Zach Halma sank his PK to extended the shootout.
The Raiders went down about ten minutes into the second half when Summit’s Jafeth Reyes scored to put the Hilltoppers up 1-0.
It took the Raiders up until the last second for them to tie the game, when, with mere seconds remaining, Brian McManus was fouled in the box, setting up a penalty kick. Rosenzweig calmly put the ball in the back of the net to extend the game.
“We thought we were going to come back,” Rosenzweig said, “we were dominating the whole game and we were having chances upon chances. It just wasn’t working out for us and finally we got what we deserved. We got a penalty kick and it was fantastic.”
The Raiders were on the offensive throughout the game and even had a possible goal knocked out at the last possible second.
In net, Sean Murray played extremely well. The junior made a few keys saves during regulation to keep the Hilltoppers at bay.
The Raiders will play Elizabeth, the fifth seed who defeated Westfield in their semifinal game, in the Union County Tournament final at Kean University at 7:30 p.m. on Friday Oct. 30.