Saturday, July 02, 2022

(Ma’ayanot Sports) On a beautiful day, with sunny skies and a light breeze, meant for softball, the Ma’ayanot Rapids softball team hosted the SAR Sting team in a rematch of last season’s championship game. The Rapids and Sting both ended their regular season with a 6-2 record, each winning and losing a game against each other earlier this spring. After the Rapids (#2 seed) beat SKA 5-1 in the quarter finals and Hillel 11-1 in the semi-finals, they were ready to host SAR, anticipating the rematch from last year. SAR (#3 seed) beat Shulamith-LI and the #1 seed Ilan to reach the finals.

With blue skies and lots of parents and fans from both teams in attendance, the game started off with solid pitching from both sides. In the bottom of the first, the Rapids stuck first with solid hits from senior captains Hodaya Rimberg (who went 4 for 4 from the plate) and Adira Schreiber, and sophomores Ayelet Eizikovitz (who had a triple in the game as well) and Meital Rimberg. The Sting defense held the Rapids to only a few runs through the first few innings with great defensive plays by their pitcher and shortstop.

The Rapids scored again in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings with powerful hitting from junior captain Sarah Motechin, freshman Tali Zelkowitz and sophomores Shifra Prager, Kayla Antosofsky and twin sisters Yakira and Aliza Mermelstein. Defensively, the Rapids played their best game of the season with strong defensive plays by Motechin, Eizikovitz and Prager, and the incredible pitching of Kayla Antosofksky, MVP of the championship game. Antosofsky only walked one batter throughout the game and had several strikeouts, while not allowing a run through the first six innings.

There is a friendly and long-standing rivalry between these two teams, as they have met in the playoffs nearly every year over the past 10 years, and have met four times in the championship game during that span. The Sting and Rapids teams both played with extremely positive sportsmanship and even joked that both teams will meet again next season. The Rapids were thrilled to bring the championship trophy home, as parents and fans looked on when each player and manager received their individual championship trophy. Both coaches were really proud of their team and their accomplishments throughout this season.

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