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Yeshiva High Schools Face Off at Sarachek Basketball Tournament

Yeshiva University’s 23rd Annual Red Sarachek Invitational Basketball Tournament tips off Thursday, March 27 at 10 a.m. at the Max Stern Athletic Center on YU’s Wilf Campus. The tournament, named after legendary former Maccabees coach Bernard “Red” Sarachek, features 20 Jewish high school basketball teams from across North America in a dramatic five-day tournament before live crowds and broadcast audiences in the thousands.


“We see value in bringing together all these incredible high school athletes from across the country to join in a healthy and energetic competition, while seeing all that Yeshiva University has to offer them in their future,” said David Miller, chief operations officer of undergraduate admissions at YU.

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Twenty Yeshiva High School Teams Take Part in YU’s Annual Sarachek Basketball Tournament

From March 7-11, 20 yeshiva high school basketball teams from across the U.S. and Canada met at the Max Stern Athletic Center on Yeshiva University’s Wilf Campus in Washington Heights to battle it out for the top spot in YU’s 22nd Annual Red Sarachek Invitational Basketball Tournament. When the buzzer sounded, the Shalhevet High School Firehawks of Los Angeles, CA were crowned the tournament’s Tier I champions.

In a thrilling championship bout, the Firehawks defeated the Frisch School Cougars of Paramus, NJ by the score of 62-53. Playing before a packed crowd and a broadcast audience in the thousands, Shalhevet shooting guard and Sarachek MVP Joseph Fallas held off a determined Frisch squad with an impressive 25 points. Read the rest of this entry…

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High Schools Face Off at Sarachek Basketball Tournament; Watch LIVE!

Yeshiva University’s 22nd Annual Red Sarachek Invitational Basketball Tournament tips off Thursday, March 7 at 10 a.m. at the Max Stern Athletic Center on YU’s Wilf Campus. The tournament, named after legendary former Maccabees coach Bernard “Red” Sarachek, features 20 Jewish high school basketball teams from across North America in a dramatic five-day tournament before live crowds and broadcast audiences in the thousands.

This year’s field is seeded as follows: Read the rest of this entry…

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YULA Panthers Defeat SAR Sting in Rematch of 2011 Sarachek Finals; Win Record Seventh Championship

After five days of thrilling basketball and friendly competition, the YULA Panthers of Los Angeles, CA were crowned champions of Yeshiva University’s 21st Annual Red Sarachek Invitational Basketball Tournament. The Panthers defeated the SAR Sting of Riverdale, NY by the score of 45-35 before a packed crowd in YU’s Max Stern Athletic Center. The win avenges last year’s championship game loss to the Sting and gives YULA its record seventh Sarachek Championship.

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The tournament, named for legendary former YU Maccabees coach Bernard “Red” Sarachek, featured 20 Jewish high school basketball teams in a dramatic tournament played before live crowds and broadcast to audiences in the thousands.

In addition to YULA and SAR, this year’s field includes schools from across the U.S. and Canada: Bnei Akiva Schools – Or Chaim (Toronto, ON); Columbus Torah Academy (Columbus, OH); Cooper Yeshiva (Memphis, TN); Frisch School (Paramus, NJ); Fuchs Mizrachi School (Beachwood, OH); Hebrew Academy High School (Montreal, QC); Houston Bnei Akiva (Houston, TX); Jewish Educational Center/RTMA (Elizabeth, NJ); Maimonides School (Brookline, MA); North Shore Hebrew Academy (Great Neck, NY); Samuel Scheck Hillel School (North Miami Beach, FL); Shalhevet High School (Los Angeles, CA); Torah Academy of Bergen County (Teaneck, NJ); Weinbaum Yeshiva High School (Boca Raton, FL); Yavneh Academy (Dallas, TX); Yeshiva Atlanta (Atlanta, GA); Yeshiva of Virginia (Richmond, VA); and Yeshiva University High School for Boys/Marsha Stern Talmudical Academy (New York, NY).

The second tier title went to Cooper Yeshiva, third tier went to Maimonides and fourth tier went to Columbus. YULA forward Jack Gindi won tournament MVP honors.

Excitement permeated Yeshiva’s Washington Heights Campus upon the invasion of fans and athletes of the tournament. For the first time in its history, those who could not attend the tournament  in person could still keep up with the action via broadcast in high-definition video provided by MacsLive. The broadcast was made possible with the support of Yeshiva University’s Office of Undergraduate Admissions and the Center for the Jewish Future. Fans also kept up with latest tournament news in real-time via Twitter and Facebook updates.

But the tournament served a function beyond the court. For many of the participants and fans, the tournament offered an opportunity to be introduced or re-introduced to the culture of Yeshiva University. Throughout the weekend, tours were conducted all over the campus so the young all-stars could gain an early appreciation for the unique educational environment offered at YU.

“I love this tournament,” said Jacob Kestenbaum, a tournament rookie from the North Shore team.  “It’s a great experience and a great atmosphere and I look forward to returning next year.”

Jacques Kaswan, another first-timer from Hillel Miami described the whole weekend as “very cool,” he said. “Its amazing that YU puts this whole thing together every year.”

Friends, family and fellow students all crowded the bleachers to watch the games. Ira Shein, a grandparent of two Fuchs Mizrachi athletes who had no previous YU connection was impressed with the grand nature of the tournament. “This is a wonderful event,” he said. “I think YU is giving these kids a great opportunity to feel a part of the American sport scene within a Jewish environment.”

Aviva Schechter, an aunt of two Miamonides students shared these sentiments. “This is so much fun,” she said. “The boys are having such a great time.”

Cindy Ashwal drove the 8 hours from Cleveland to watch her son Eli, from the Fuchs Mizrachi team, play in the tournament. “I would not have missed this for anything,” she said. “This is fantastic for my son to meet up with Jewish boys from all over the country. I hope YU keeps it up every year.”

For complete coverage of the tournament, including scores, statistics, game summaries and awards visit MacsLive.

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Annual Sarachek Basketball Tournament Tips Off at Yeshiva University

Yeshiva University’s 21st Annual Red Sarachek Invitational Basketball Tournament tips off Thursday, March 22 at 10 a.m. at the Max Stern Athletic Center on YU’s Wilf Campus. The tournament, named after revered former Maccabees coach Bernard “Red” Sarachek, features 20 Jewish high school basketball teams in a dramatic five-day tournament before live crowds and broadcast audiences in the thousands.

This year’s field includes schools from across the U.S. and Canada: Bnei Akiva Schools – Or Chaim (Toronto, ON); Columbus Torah Academy (Columbus, OH); Cooper Yeshiva (Memphis, TN); Frisch School (Paramus, NJ); Fuchs Mizrachi School (Beachwood, OH); Hebrew Academy High School (Montreal, QC); Houston Bnei Akiva (Houston, TX); Jewish Educational Center/RTMA (Elizabeth, NJ); Maimonides School (Brookline, MA); North Shore Hebrew Academy (Great Neck, NY); Samuel Scheck Hillel School (North Miami Beach, FL); SAR (Riverdale, NY); Shalhevet High School (Los Angeles, CA); Torah Academy of Bergen County (Teaneck, NJ); Weinbaum Yeshiva High School (Boca Raton, FL); Yavneh Academy (Dallas, TX); Yeshiva Atlanta (Atlanta, GA); Yeshiva of Virginia (Richmond, VA); YULA High School for Boys (Los Angeles, CA); and Yeshiva University High School for Boys/Marsha Stern Talmudical Academy (New York, NY).

Sarachek

The Annual Sarachek Tournament runs from March 22 - 26.

Complete coverage of the tournament, including live play-by-play broadcasts, as well as updated scores, statistics, game summaries and pictures will be provided by MacsLive. For the first time in its history, all of the coverage of the Sarachek Tournament will be broadcast live in high-definition video to fans around the world. This broadcast is made possible with the support of Yeshiva University’s Office of Undergraduate Admissions and the Center for the Jewish Future.

Fans can also follow the action on Twitter using the hashtag #sarachek2012.

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The winner of Yeshiva University’s 2011 Sarachek Tournament is SAR High School

Five days of basketball and friendly competition among Yeshiva high school teams from across the United States and Canada are over. The winner of Yeshiva University’s 2011 Sarachek Tournament is SAR High School, which defeated YULA 43-36 before a packed gym on Monday afternoon. The SAR-YULA game capped a long weekend that included a Shabbaton for the players and saw a steady stream of visitors to the Max Stern Athletic Center on YU’s Wilf Campus in Washington Heights.

The SAR team and some of the enthusiastic and well-mannered fans who cheered them on, celebrated together after the team's victory in Yeshiva University's 2011 Sarachek Tournament.

To see hundreds of photos from the five days of competition click here.

The tournament is named for the late Red Sarachek, a legendary YU basketball coach who earlier in his career helped to integrate professional basketball. To learn more about Red Sarachek click on yu.edu/radio for a podcast of a March 17 interview with Coach Johnny Halpert (begins at 33:35), who played for Sarachek and has himself coached YU’s basketball team for 39 years.

An SAR player sinks a basket during his team's 43-36 victory over YULA in the championship game of Yeshiva University's 2011 Sarachek Tournament.


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Yeshiva University’s 20th Annual Red Sarachek Invitational Basketball Tournament begins March 24

Yeshiva University’s 20th Annual Red Sarachek Invitational Basketball Tournament tips off at 10am on March 24, 2011,  at the Max Stern Athletic Center on YU’s Wilf Campus.  The tournament, named after revered former Maccabees coach Bernard “Red” Sarachek, features 20 Jewish high school basketball teams in a dramatic five-day tournament before live crowds and broadcast audiences that number in the tens of thousands.

This year’s field includes schools from across the U.S. and Canada, including teams from Los Angeles, Atlanta, Dallas, Toronto, Chicago, Boston, Florida and the Tri-State area.

Complete coverage of the tournament, live play-by-play broadcasts of all games played at the Max Stern Athletic Center, as well as updated scores, statistics, game summaries and pictures will be provided by MacsLive.

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The Lions squared off against the Rams in the Sarachek final.

Mar 31, 2009 — Chants of “M-T-A” and “R-A-M-S! Rams! Rams! Rams!” reverberated throughout the filled-to-capacity crowd at Yeshiva University’s Max Stern Athletic Center as hundreds of students, parents and alumni gathered to watch the 18th annual Red Sarachek Basketball Tournament championship game between the Yeshiva University High School for Boys / Marsha Stern Talmudical Academy (YUHSB) Lions and the Ramaz Rams—both of Manhattan. In the end, Ramaz’s defense proved too tough for the Lions as the Rams pulled away with a 48-26 victory.

View a gallery of photos from the event.

“I’d like to congratulate Ramaz on their win. They played a great game,” said YUHSB Head Coach Daniel Gibber. “Today just wasn’t our day, but it was an incredible season and I’m extremely proud of my guys.”

Daniel Klein, a senior guard for the Lions, echoed the coach’s sentiments. “We gave it all we had and it was exciting just being here,” Klein said.

The championship capped off a week of thrilling basketball for the 20 teams participating in the tournament.

“This was a lot of fun,” said Jacob Moskowitz, a senior guard for Los Angeles’ Shalhevet Hebrew High School. “It was cool bonding with Jews from other parts of the world.”

The tournament, named for the legendary Bernard “Red” Sarachek—head men’s basketball coach at YU for over 25 years—was established in 1992 as a way to honor Sarachek’s accomplishments and contributions to the sport and the Jewish community. Since the inception of the tournament, nine different schools have been crowned champions.

“The tournament provides students from diverse backgrounds with the opportunity to meet and compete with their counterparts,” said Michael Kranzler, YU director of undergraduate admissions. In addition to basketball, many players spent Shabbat together off-campus, leading to a sense of sportsmanship that could be felt throughout the tournament.

“My team was looking forward to the opportunity to reunite with old friends and make new ones,” said Yeshivat Or Chaim (Toronto) Head Coach Jason Blackwell, who found the tournament to be “a great team-building experience.”

Championships were awarded to the top four tiers with Ramaz winning Tier 1, Or Chaim winning Tier 2, Melvin J. Berman Hebrew Academy (Rockville, MD) winning Tier 3, and Shalhevet winning Tier 4.

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Coach Red Sarachek was an influential figure in basketball and a much-loved personality on campus.

Oct 8, 2008 — When filmmaker David Vyorst decided to make “The First Basket,” a documentary about Jews and basketball, his research led him to Yeshiva University’s legendary coach Red Sarachek. The late Sarachek, deeply loved and immensely respected by his players, was also a major figure in the development of the game.

“Red is generally overlooked in basketball history because he didn’t have winning records, but he influenced the top people in basketball,” said Jeffrey Gurock, the assistant basketball coach of the Yeshiva University Maccabees and the Libby M. Klapperman Professor of Jewish History at Yeshiva University.

“Some of the great, big time coaches like Lou Carneseca, Dean Smith and Bob Knight came to Yeshiva to watch his practices,” said Gurock, who served as lead historian on “The First Basket.”

The film explores how basketball served as a powerful force of acculturation for Jewish children in the United States. Most learned the still-developing game in settlement houses in the concentrated immigrant neighborhoods of New York City, and many of the great early players and coaches were Jewish.

Ozzie Schechtman, a young Jew from Brooklyn who played for the original New York Knickerbockers in 1946, even scored the first basket in the history of the Basketball Association of America, later known as the National Basketball Association (NBA). His momentous points inspired the title of Vyorst’s documentary.

Vyorst became interested in the subject of his film in the late 1990s when he was rediscovering both his Jewish roots and his love for basketball. “I heard an interview with the 1946 Knicks team and they were all Jewish,” said Vyorst. “They spoke about the early roots of basketball and it resonated with what was going on in my life.”

The film features interviews with Sarachek and shows images of his Macs teams from the 1950s and 60s. Included in one of the pictures is current Macs basketball coach Jon Halpert. The movie also points out that Red Holtzman, the great New York Knicks coach, played the game alongside Saracheck in his youth.

“Red Sarachek was one of the great basketball tacticians,” said Vyorst. “Many of the plays and techniques that the better known coaches in America use today were first taught by him. For a comprehensive history of Jews and basketball we had to include Yeshiva’s coach.”

“The First Basket” premiers in New York City on Oct. 29 at the Village East Cinema in Manhattan. Go to www.thefirstbasket.com for more information.

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The Ida Crown Aces beat top-seeded Hebrew Academy of Nassau County in the Sarachek finals.

Apr 9, 2008 — A frenzied group of fans stormed the court for the third game in a row following Ida Crown Jewish Academy’s first-place finish in Yeshiva University’s 17th Annual Red Sarachek Basketball Tournament on March 31. Although the final game came easy to the Ida Crown Aces, they barely survived two wild contests en route to their first tournament championship.

The Aces escaped their Tier I quarterfinal match-up against reigning champions Young Israel of Century City with a last-second 48-47 victory. Seeded third in the tournament, they then upset Ramaz Upper School 71-67 in a frantic double-overtime thriller, before knocking off the top-seeded Hebrew Academy of Nassau County 69- 52 in the finals.

Ida Crown head coach Howard Braun, who achieved his 450th career win on the tournament’s first day, pinpointed the key to his team’s success. “This entire team is one team, that’s a concept we stressed,” Braun said. “For the entire season that’s the way we played. This team simply has tremendous heart.”

Ari Bloomberg, an Ida Crown junior, echoed that sentiment. “We have incredible team chemistry. We felt like the underdog and just played our hardest. This team refused to give up hope for the whole tournament.”

The Sarachek Tournament, run by the Yeshiva University Admissions Office, is named in honor of Bernie “Red” Sarachek, YU’s team coach for 25 years and a legend in the basketball world. The tournament, from March 27-31, hosted 18 Jewish high schools from across the country. The teams stayed in a local hotel over the weekend, where YU students ran informal programming for the athletes.

In addition to the players and coaches, many family members, friends, and fans joined the teams in New York City. “We came from California, for our second year in a row, to watch our son play,” said Cathy Hoffman, mother of Valley Shaarey Zedek star Dovie Hoffman, and kippah designer for the entire team. “It is an amazing opportunity to bring Orthodox kids together in this setting.”

The Yeshiva University High School for Boys (YUHSB)/Marsha Stern Talmudical Academy took the Tier II championship while the Weinbaum Yeshiva High School won the top spot in Tier III. YUHSB’s Gavriel Feld was named the Three Point Shootout Champion as well as the Tier II MVP. Weinbaum’s Elie Baratz won MVP of Tier III.

“I was surprised by how many fans came out for the games,” said Bloomberg, the tournament MVP. “We couldn’t have done it without them.”

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