May 19, 2024
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Teaneck Doghouse Sportstar of the Week: Kayla Weissman

The Jewish Link of New Jersey and Teaneck Doghouse would like to recognize almost 12 -year-old Kayla Weissman as this week’s Sportstar of the Week. The seventh grader at Hatikvah International Academy Charter School in East Brunswick, is celebrating her bat mitzvah this week. Weissman is an avid softball player and for her bat mitzvah project she is collecting money and baseball/softball equipment for a great organization called Pitch in for Baseball and Softball. Kayla’s father, and coach, David Weissman told the JLNJ, “Kayla is very soft spoken, yet a fierce competitor! She has learned many valuable lessons during her softball career, like working hard, helping others, being a team player and never giving up. Her mitzvah project is an example of her passion and kindness. She absolutely loves playing softball and she wants other children to experience the same excitement and the lessons that baseball or softball can teach. As her softball coach I am quite proud of her softball achievements and accolades, but on a personal level as her father, I am so proud of the young lady she is becoming.” If interested, equipment, or checks made out to PIFB, can be dropped off at Weissman’s home at 6 Troy court in East Brunswick. Email Kayla at [email protected] for more information.

Kayla, mazel tov on your upcoming bat mitzvah and this most worthy project. If you had to select one person, who would you say is your role model and why?

My role model is my father, because he will do anything for his family. He works full time, but has been coaching my softball team since I was 5 years old. I know he’s tired and busy, but he always makes the time for me and my team. He will often leave work early, coach my game or lead a practice for a few hours, and then continue to do his work after the game is done—until late at night.

What is your greatest sports accomplishment?

My greatest sports accomplishment was when I was pitching in the championship softball game last year. It was the final inning, and we were winning by only one run. I was brought in to pitch the last inning of the game and struck out all three batters on the opposing team, and my team won the championship!

Who is your favorite professional athlete and why?

My favorite athlete is Didi Gregorius, shortstop for the New York Yankees. Not only is Didi a great batter and fielder, but he is always smiling. I can tell he loves what he’s doing. After every win, he goes on Twitter and proudly thanks his teammates for their accomplishments during the game. He never mentions any of his great plays or hits.

What is your earliest sport memory?

My earliest sports memory is of attending a Yankee game with my family when I was little. I loved it!

What is the weirdest sports related thing that has happened to you?

My weirdest sports memory was from this past summer. My family went on a baseball road trip to see MLB games in different stadiums. We were in Camden Yards watching an Orioles vs. Red Sox game. We were sitting in the bleachers and a player hit a homerun that was coming right to me. I held up my glove to catch the ball, but another fan jumped in front of me and grabbed it when it was only inches away from my glove!

What is your favorite thing to do when you are not playing sports?

When I am not playing sports, I like to hang out with my friends and watch TV with my sister Elana and brother Ben.

What is the best thing about being a Sportstar?

The best thing about being a Sportstar is that I can let people know about my mitzvah project. I am collecting money and new and used baseball/softball equipment for a great organization called Pitch in for Baseball and Softball. The organization provides equipment to needy children in and out of the United States, including Israel!

The Teaneck Doghouse Sportstar of the Week will receive a $15 gift at the Teaneck Doghouse. Please send nominees for an upcoming Jewish Link of New Jersey and Teaneck Doghouse Sportstar of the Week to [email protected].

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