June 17, 2024
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June 17, 2024
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HANC and SAR Triumph in First-Ever Martin Weiselberg Memorial Preseason Hockey Tournaments

Varsity and junior varsity hockey kicked off their season in style, as seven schools converged on Yeshiva of Flatbush in Brooklyn, for the first preseason tournament in nearly two decades, presented by the All Star Hockey Group. Playing off of the success of the yearly junior high tournaments that have taken place since 2006, the Martin Weiselberg Tournament series, with the help of the Yeshivah of Flatbush, put on two simultaneous six-team preseason tournaments that have now set the stage for what will shape up to be one of the most interesting seasons in the last decade.

The day kicked off with round-robin sessions, as the six teams each played two games, using both Flatbush’s state of the art hockey gym, and, in a throwback to Yeshiva League yesteryear, the basketball gym, which, until 2015, housed the Flatbush hockey team, all-star games and several Yeshiva League championships.

The varsity session kicked off the day with Kushner defeating host Flatbush 7-0, starting a trend of several shutouts that would take place over the course of the day. Kushner would post a 2-0 record, also defeating HANC 3-2 in a shootout, after storming back from a 2-0 deficit in the final minute of the contest and stellar goaltending from freshman Evan Haber in the shootout session. SAR would also post a 2-0 record defeating Rambam 2-0 and YDE 6-1. HANC and YDE would rebound, each earning wins over Flatbush and Rambam, respectively, to advance into the semifinals along with Kushner and SAR.

In the JV sessions, Flatbush and SAR moved through undefeated as Flatbush downed Kushner 4-0 and YDE 5-0, and SAR knocked off Rambam 4-0 and JEC 6-1. Moving on to the semifinals with them were YDE and Rambam after YDE defeated Kushner 4-0, and Rambam overcame JEC 2-1 after a wild shootout that saw Rambam’s Rami Kessock and JEC’s Yehuda Klavan make double-digit saves in an elimination round.

The JV playoffs saw the two top teams advance as Flatbush knocked off league-divisional opponent Rambam 6-3 and SAR trounced YDE 6-2. The championship game would belong to the Sting as freshmen Jack Linhart and Michael Goldmann would steer SAR to the win. Goldmann kept Flatbush’s high-powered offense at bay for most of the game, while Linhart’s hat-trick were the driving force in the 4-2 victory, earning him MVP honors.

In the varsity tournament, Kushner overcame a 2-0 early deficit to defeat YDE 7-3, but the game of the afternoon was the matchup featuring SAR and HANC. The Hurricanes, semifinalists in last year’s league playoffs, were able to overcome a 1-0 first period deficit—behind stellar goaltending from Joey Diamond and goals by Eliya Yizhaky and Eli Schwartz—to upset varsity championship contender SAR 2-1 to set up a rematch in the finals with Kushner. The finals would not prove to be as exciting as the initial matchup of the day between the two, as HANC’s Jordan Gedjerman would explode for six goals, while Diamond pitched yet another shutout in HANC’s 7-0 win. In a close decision, it was determined that Diamond’s day as a whole garnered him the MVP award, but that would not put a damper on Gedjerman’s day or the rest of the HANC Hurricanes that have now put the rest of the varsity hockey league on notice that they will contend for a league championship this year.

As has become tradition at the junior high tournaments, all participants walked away with tournament T-shirts, courtesy of LNS Enterprises, and the winners took home trophies and new banners with continued appreciation toward Crown Trophy of Brooklyn. The Tournament has extended a special thank you to the Yeshivah of Flatbush for hosting, Rabbi Beyda, Rabbi Galpert, AD Barry Neuberger and Head of Hockey Avidan Berman for their assistance over the course of the day.

The Tournament would also like to thank its presenting sponsor the All Star Hockey Group. The All Star Hockey Group is a compilation of coaches from around the league dedicated to boosting participation and enthusiasm in the yeshiva hockey world following the effects of the COVID pandemic. The All Star Hockey Group looks forward to being involved in more events this year, including an All Star Day and several post-season tournaments for each age group.

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