Memphis Yeshiva Invitational

11-9-2014 | Cooper Macs Fall Prey to the AJA Jaguars, 36-33

11-9-2014 | Cooper Macs Fall Prey to the AJA Jaguars, 36-33

By: Efraim Wiener

The 14th seeded, hometown Cooper Macs took on the 15th seeded Atlanta Jewish Academy Jaguars for the 5th place in Tier II. The Macs took on Atlanta last year at Sarachek and lost. They came into the game with a very intense mindset. They were hoping to get some closure and come out with a big win, but early in the game it wasn’t looking too good. Zev Frankel got into a rhythm and had eight points early in the first quarter. Later in the first quarter, the Macs started to make their shots with David Silberman and Ariel Kampf each knocking down a three to knot the game up at 10-10 as the first quarter drew to a close.

What really stood out from Cooper was their defensive aggressiveness. Throughout the first half, they continued to trap and rebound pretty well. David Silberman shot very well throughout the first half, and had seven points with three minutes to go in the first. Then Dustin Dayani answered with a three of his own, and for the rest of the first half the score went back and forth with each team answering back after a point. At halftime, the Jaguars had a slight edge over the Macs by a score of 17-15.

At the start of the second half, Atlanta was playing very well. Dustin Dayani knocked down a three and Daniel Bashary made a layup, and all hope seemed to be lost until Kampf struck back. He nailed a three and Silberman made a very tough layup, to bring them up from falling into a hole. At the end of the third quarter the Macs had climbed out of a deficit, and were only down by 3 points, 27-24, going into their final quarter of the Cooper Invitational.

The Macs came into the fourth quarter smelling victory. Their intensity and urgency to win was simply unmatched. Yonatan Cooper exploded with five points making a three and a put back. With two minutes to go the Macs were down one, and could almost touch the win, feeling redemption from last year’s defeat. But then Bashary made a layup, which increased the Jaguars lead up to three. The basket ended up being the final point scored and the Jaguars hung on to beat the Cooper Macs by a score of 36-33 to claim fifth place in Tier II. Samuel Kalnitz led the Jaguars with 10 points, and Ariel Kampf led the Macs with 13 points.

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