A Lesson in Sportsmanship

What an intense MYHSAL (Metropolitan Yeshiva High School Athletic League) Girls Varsity Basketball Championship Game!  So thankful to be able to watch the Bruriah Lightning take on the Frisch Cougars streaming live.

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The entire squads of both teams were introduced to the crowd prior to the game, with granddaughter Kayla Goldstein, #42 playing her usual sixth person role coming off the bench for the Bruriah Lightning.  I love the show of sportsmanship with both teams high-fiving the referees prior to the game.

After the introductions, both squads turned to face the flags as the national anthems of both Israel and the United States were played in a symbol of solidarity.

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The Bruriah Lightning got off to a fast start jumping out to a 3-0 lead, and went on to play a very spirited first quarter.  Even on the streaming video you could tell that the players were as pumped up as their respective cheering sections.

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Kayla came in toward the end of the first quarter, and #42 gave the Lightning a charge with her defense and rebounding.

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The first quarter ended with Frisch up by a point, in what looked to be a very competitive game.

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Fricsh maintained a lead early in the second quarter when a scary moment occurred.  Their star player, Sarah Lieberman, tripped and turned her ankle.  At the time that she hobbled off the court it wasn’t certain when she would be able to return.

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Lieberman would return, and in fact played with such determination that she would ultimately win the game’s MVP.  But at that point Bruriah continued to rebound and play with intensity, as Kayla went to the line and put the Lightning up by one point as she converted one of two foul shots.

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Almost like a boxing match, the two teams continued to trade offensive punches as the lead see-sawed back and forth with Oma cheering intently on the Bruriah side.

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As tmie expired at the end of the first half, it was anyone’s game, with Bruriah clinging to a one point lead.

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Things began to turn Frisch’s way in the 3rd quarter, as the Lightning struggled to rebound, make open shots, and convert from the foul line.  As time expired in the quarter, the Lightning found themselves down by six points but still very much in the game.

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A couple of minutes into the fourth quarter, with 5:22 left in the game the tide began to turn as the Frisch built it’s lead with Sarah Lieberman leading the way.

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Frisch scored four straight to pull ahead 47-36 with 3:57 left, and as Frisch built their lead to 51-39 with 2:28 remaining, the Bruriah Lightning looked dejected.  They couldn’t buy a basket, struggled to grab rebounds, and couldn’t stop Frisch from scoring.

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As time expired and fans milled about, the scoreboard told the final story of the Frisch Cougars winning the MYSHAL Girls Varsity Basketball Championship over the Bruriah Lightning 56-44.

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It was a hard fought game for three quarters, but the Lightning simply ran out of gas in the fourth quarter.  Was it due to a lack of conditioning and practice these past two weeks during an unplanned weather delay in getting to the Championship?  Did Frisch do a better job of teamwork and distributed scoring?  In this season of March Madness and one and done, mental replays and pledges for the future are what the losing team takes home.   The Lightning face an uphill battle without senior Jesse returning next year.  But “Thurm” will be back at center (reminiscent of the Golden State Warriors classic center, Nate Thurmond), and granddaughter Kayla will be back as a junior having important experiences under her belt.  And that thought left Abba and the rest of our family with a smile upon our faces.

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About Leonard J. Press, O.D., FAAO, FCOVD

Developmental Optometry is my passion as well as occupation. Blogging allows me to share thoughts in a unique visual style.
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