Memphis Yeshiva Invitational

11-9-2014 | Hillel Heat Capture Tier II Championship, Defeat CJHS Tigers 63-31

11-9-2014 | Hillel Heat Capture Tier II Championship, Defeat CJHS Tigers 63-31

By: Shmuel Perl

The Tier II championship game featured the #1 Hillel Heat and the #3 CJHS Tigers. Hillel, after a tough loss against YULA, had ripped through Tier II on their way to the championship game. Chicagoland, who were seeded #4 originally, had a bit of a tougher time. They did manage to pull out close wins against Atlanta and JDS, and looked to do it again against the Heat. The Tigers were led by star point guard Josh Newlander, while the Heat liked to play an up tempo style of play that spaced the floor for their arsenal of shooters.

The Heat scored first, but an Eli Schrayer bucket tied it up early in the first. The Heat tried to get the ball to big man Nathan Bibi who was matched up against the much smaller Jacob Erlichman. The Tigers played good defense and forced the Heat to find points from other players. A Robert Tobias free throw put Hillel ahead, but a nice block by Josh Newlander kept the score close. The Heat finally got the ball to Bibi with four minutes gone by, and he converted on a three point play to put Hillel up four. The Tigers continued to struggle on both ends of the floor, and Bibi scored again in the post to put Hillel up six points. The next two minutes found both teams finding it hard to score, as neither team could hold on to the ball. The scoring drought was broken when Bibi found the basket to give Hillel an eight point lead. Josh Newlander finally got on the board when he hit two free throws near the end of the first. Yoni Maltsman hit two more free throws for the Tigers, but a buzzer beating three by Elliot Saka made it 13-6 Hillel at the end of the first quarter.

The Heat came out firing to start the second quarter, forcing turnovers and benefiting from the long range shooting of Sam Ashkenazi. Robert Tobias made a put back bucket and Hillel continued to play excellent pressure defense to stay on top of the Tigers. Hillel continued to hit from long range, this time it was Gordon Adelson. Robert Tobias added on to the lead with another short jumper, and with four minutes left in the half, the Tigers just looked overwhelmed. Newlander hit two free throws with three minutes left to make it a slightly closer game, but once again Hillel came back and scored on the other end. Both teams scored twice to end the first half with the score being 29-14 in favor of the Heat.

The Tigers got the opening possession of the second half, but Josh Newlander could not finish at the rim. Hillel went the other way and scored, but a Josh Newlander three pointer swung the momentum back to the Tigers side. The Heat called timeout and quieted things down, but turnovers and missed layups prevented them from pulling away. Nathan Bibi hit a pair of free throws, and Gordon Adelson got his own rebound and scored to give Hillel a commanding lead. Bibi continued to dominate, grabbing an offensive rebound and putting it back, and then draining a three on the next possession. Hillel scored again from deep with two minutes left in the quarter, but this time it was Isaac Beda. Coby Drexler made a free throw for the Tigers with a minute left in the quarter, but Hillel was well in control. Both teams scored to end the third, making the score 43-20 Hillel.

Both teams scored to start the fourth quarter, but Hillel, despite being up by 23, would not let up. Hillel hit some free throws, and with four minutes left, finally decided to play their bench. Tzvi Herman made a layup for the Tigers with four minutes left, but Joseph Anzarouth scored three points for Hillel. The Tigers scored, but the Heat came back with a 6-0 run led by Jacob Wasser. Both teams played hard over the last two minutes, but at this point the game was decided. The final score was 63-31 in favor of Hillel, who became the 2014 Cooper Invitational Tier II Champions. The high scorer for CJHS was Josh Newlander with 13 points, while Nathan Bibi led Hillel with 18 points.

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