July 16, 2024
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Yeshiva League Pass’ MYHSAL Western Conference Basketball Preview

Last season, MYHSAL varsity basketball was action packed: the ankle breaking crossovers by Judah Oppenheimer, phenomenal passing of Moshe Heller or even the season ending championship winning and-one by Ricky Sutton, it’s safe to say the fans were entertained. This season promises to be even more exciting with many returning varsity stars and junior varsity standouts. Players who might have had a minor role last year, could be the difference makers in this year’s MYHSAL varsity basketball Western Conference.

The Heschel Heat will come into the start of the season on a high note coming off a championship win last year and hoping to build on that success. They will be led by arguably the best scorer in the Yeshiva League, Ricky Sutton. Although the Heat are missing departed seniors from last season’s championship roster, Coach Pickman and his players will work hard to defend their hardware from last season and hopefully repeat, but will be faced by many other teams which also have the same goal.

Over the past few seasons the Frisch Cougars and TABC Storm have headlined the MYHSAL western conference and this season will be the same. The Cougars have the deadly guard duo of Akiva Feit and Max Zakheim along with sharpshooter Eitan Dukas and swingman Danny Weinberger. The Cougars will have no problem locking down the paint with Billy Krause who is usually a head taller than opposing centers, as well as the high flying Shmuli Coates, arguably the best player in the Yeshiva League,.

The TABC Storm has a backcourt duo of Yoni Mann and Yehudah Mirwis, who similarly to the Frisch guard duo, have been playing together since middle school and are presences on both the defensive and offensive ends of the court. The Storm also has key big men Yitzi Weiss, Yonatan Kaye and Yonah Hook who will look to defend the paint as well as secure the boards. In addition, the Storm also has a promising junior class led by offensive stars Noam Kinderleher and Zevi Samet.

Representing Riverdale, the SAR Sting had a nice run last season, reaching the Sarachek tier one semi-finals and MYHSAL quarter-finals, but they will be missing cornerstone superstar Judah Oppenheimer. The Sting will be led by seniors Eli Jesselson, Ami Citron and Adin Rothstein as well as junior varsity stars Shalom Hazan and Henry Mann.

The Hillel Heat and Ramaz Rams are two teams with high aspirations and very similar stories. Both teams will have most of their stars from last season return once again. The Heat demonstrated their skills and promise in the Magen David preseason tournament when they reached the championship while knocking off  many challenging opponents along the way. The Rams will be led by arguably the top underclassmen Spencer Rubenstein. The junior will be playing his second year on varsity and along with his teammates they will look to be this year’s Cinderella story.

The JEC Thunder look to a new crew to pick up for the talented class that graduated last year. Senior Hillel Glick and junior star big man Ethan Thurm will look to fill the void created by Yair Kimmel and the Heller Duo.

The MTA Lions are another squad looking to almost entirely new faces this season. Last season’s tier two Sarcheck championship team took home the hardware and naming rights to the middle name of Coach Weissberg’s son. The new look Lions hope for continued success. The Lions will be led by returning senior guards Tzvi Zigelstein and Ikey Gutlove and big men Mendel Hein and Elie Goldberg. In addition, the junior class looks to be promising, which are headlined by junior varsity standouts Yosef Zakon, Tani Engel, Azi Goldberg as well as many other essential members of the roster.

The Kushner Cobras and Waterbury Wolfpack (featuring six players from North Jersey on their roster), are both teams with success in the past and despite missing key players their coaches will look to instill the desire to win into each of their players and will definitely display it on the hardwood.

The Western Conference of the MYHSAL varsity basketball league, has plenty of talented coaches and rosters, but in the end there will only be one team who are named the Yeshiva League champions. The season will be filled with highlight plays, buzzer beaters and many rivals going head to head.

Feel free to check out Yeshiva League Pass on Instagram @yeshivaleaguepass or the website www.yeshivaleaguepass.com  for updates and highlights on all varsity Yeshiva league action.


Ikey Gutlove is a senior at Yeshiva University High School for Boys (MTA) and co-operator of Yeshiva League Pass. Email him directly [email protected] with breaking varsity scores and highlights to be featured in this section weekly and online at yeshivaleaguepass.com as well as on Instagram @yeshivaleaguepass.

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