Thursday, February 02, 2023

The TABC Storm came into the playoffs hungry for a victory over their cross-county rivals, the Frisch Cougars. After a tough defeat against the Cougars in the last game of the MYHSAL regular season, TABC looked to capitalize on its home court advantage and advance to the next round of the playoffs.

Both teams proved early on that they would not go down easily, as they traded baskets back and forth throughout the first quarter. Justin Hod and Rami Laifer led Frisch’s offensive attack and took advantage of a few key TABC turnovers in the second quarter to go on an extended run. Frisch pushed its advantage at the close of the first half, and appeared to be repeating its play from the two teams’ regular season match-up. Despite great effort, the Storm faltered on the offensive end and entered the halftime break down by 7 points, 24-17.

The Storm came out with a renewed defensive effort to begin the second half, and once TABC’s shots began to fall, the tide of the game changed in the Storm’s favor. After losing on its home court on “Senior” night, the Storm was not about to allow the Cougars to defeat them again. Behind the incredible play of Yehoshua Zirman (’14), who finished the game with a double-double (19 points, 10 rebounds), as well as 5 blocks and 4 assists, the Storm was able to go up by 5 at the end of the third quarter, and never looked back. Defensively, TABC only gave up 4 points to Frisch in the crucial third quarter, which was one of the main reasons the Storm saw a 12 point turnaround after the halftime break.

Alex Hirt (’14) came up big for the Storm, leading the charge back in the second half, scoring 14 points, including four 3-pointers. Solo Shulman (’15) and Moshe Brum (’15) were the Storm’s anchors on defense, each scoring 7 points, as well as adding crucial steals and rebounds late in the game. Dan Poleyeff (’15), Azi Fine (’15), and Jared Breen (’14) all logged crucial minutes in this playoff battle, and helped TABC advance to the second round, with the final score reading 51- 45.

By Noah Mahpour

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