Viglione’s header gives boys soccer its 19th UCT Title, 5th in a row

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Peter Warren

photos by Peter Warren

Junior Robbie Viglione etched his name into Scotch Plains-Fanwood boys soccer lore as he scored the game-winning goal of the 2015 Union County Tournament final.
With less than two minutes to go in the first overtime, Viglione received a cross from senior Ari Rosenzweig inside the box and headed the ball to the right and past the Elizabeth goalkeeper to break the tie, win the game, and send his team and fans into a frenzy.
“I was running up the center of the box, right next to the PK spot,” said Viglione. “I saw Ari running up the right flank, saw him connect with a great righty ball, I jumped as high as I possibly could and it went in the net.”
It was only Viglione’s second goal of the year, but it could not have come at a more opportune time.
“I didn’t really know what happened,” said Viglione. “I saw the ball roll into the net and started running around as fast as I could, trying to avoid being bombarded by my teammates.”
While it took about 87 minutes for either team to get on the scoreboard, Elizabeth’s best scoring opportunity came in the first minute. A Minuteman had received a through ball and got past the Raider defense. However, he could not get past junior goalkeeper Sean Murray who made an incredible stop.
“It was important,” Murray said, “They came straight down our throat. I just closed down the striker, made myself as big as I could, and came up with the save.”
That was not Murray’s only action; he was outstanding throughout the game for the Raiders, making key stops.
The Raiders were a little slow to start in the first half, but by the second half Rosenzweig had the best chance to break the tie in regulation. With about five minutes left in the second half, he took an ambitious shot from outside the 18-yard box that hit the post.
The win gave the Raiders their 19th county title, the program’s fifth in a row. For senior co-captain Jake Longo, it was his fourth title in four years.
“Every year, our teams have been more and more of a unit,” Longo said, “I really feel like this team is a family and it is much sweeter this time than any other time.”
Coach Tom Breznitsky, who has been the coach of the boys soccer team for all of their county titles, could not be happier for his team.
“I always tell guys,” said coach Breznitsky. “I’m going to be here next year. [Assistant coach Joe Mortarulo] is going to be here next year. It’s your year. I feel very, very happy for this year’s team because they work so hard, came back from adversity, more times that I can remember than any team that we have ever had, and they deserve it.”
For everyone at Kean University, it was a game to remember.
“I’ve imagined this in my head,” Viglione said, “and it’s still not as good as it just was.”