SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD — When the Scotch Plains-Fanwood boys’ soccer team fell to 1-6 to begin the season with just one goal scored in those seven games, head coach Tom Breznitsky knew it was time for a change. The change that was made and the personnel involved has redefined the entire complexion of the Raiders’ season and turned the team into a legitimate state championship contender.
The star of the move so far has been Zidan Abdella, who, in just two week’s time, has skyrocketed into one of the county’s most potent scorers and premier forwards. Abdella’s scoring feats are the reason why he’s this week’s Joint Motion Physical Therapy TAPintoSPF Athlete of the Week.
To fully gauge Abdella’s impact to the Raiders team, it’s impeccable to know: Before being placed in the starting lineup, the Raiders were 1-6 and had scored just one goal for the entire season; after moving into the starting 11, the team is a perfect 6-0 and has found the back of the net a staggering 27 times. Seven of those goals have come courtesy of Abdella, who leads the team in that category.
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“Zidan has done well. He’s got a nose for the goal, and he sees the game well,” Scotch Plains-Fanwood head coach Tom Breznitsky told TAPinto.net. “One of the things with forwards that you try to have them understand is that you’ve got to be able to see the goal-scoring opportunity. A lot of guys don’t see a goal-scoring opportunity, but Zidan does.”
Of the junior’s seven goals scored, four of them came last week. He netted the decisive lone goal in Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s victory over Gov. Livingston on Thursday, and scored two goals apiece in county tournament action Sunday, Oct. 1 against Roselle Catholic and Saturday, Oct. 7 against Dayton. Abdella was one of nine Raiders to score in the Roselle Catholic game, as Scotch Plains-Fanwood netted a decade-high 13 goals against the Lions.
Abdella wasn’t the only change made to the Raiders offense, however. Classmates Michael and Alex Ferrara were moved from the midfield to the attack. A corresponding move saw Brogan Quigley slide from the front line to the midfield. The three up front with Quigley at mid has paid dividends for Scotch Plains-Fanwood — the attack of Abdella and both Ferraras has combined for a total of 14 goals, while Quigley has dished out three assists and scored twice from the midfield.
Using its newly-discovered weapon of Abdella, Scotch Plains-Fanwood goes to battle starting this week. The Raiders will play host to two of their biggest divisional rivals and toughest regular season opponents — Elizabeth on Tuesday and Westfield on Thursday — and then take on Cranford in the Union County Tournament quarterfinal round on Saturday. This week’s grueling slate will prove to be the ultimate test to determine whether Abdella and the Raiders’ transformed offense is a championship-caliber one.
“We’ve got Elizabeth coming up on Tuesday and then Westfield,” Breznitsky pointed out, “and that’ll tell us if we’ve really turned the corner on our end offensive-wise.”
Joint Motion Physical Therapy is located across the street from the Stage House Tavern and shares a free, handicap accessible parking lot with the Scotch Plains Public Library. Joint Motion can be reached for an appointment by phone 908-322-3202, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also learn more at www.facebook.com/JointMotionPT.
Joint Motion Physical Therapy
373 Park Ave.
Scotch Plains, NJ 07076