Derech Etz Chaim, Midrash, Imrei come through in the Clutch!
Updated: Dec 30, 2021
By Monty Wayland
Derech Etz Chaim showed heart pulling away down the stretch, the Midrash Ballers had a big comeback victory, and Imrei won dramatically in overtime, in key games in the FM Home Loans Israel Basketball League.
In the opening game of the week, Zevi Samet got off to a scorching start, scoring the first 11 points of the game for DEC. The DecoGear Musketeers put up a fight, going back and forth with Derech Etz Chaim most of the way, until DEC's Zak Lenik put away the game with a few clutch buckets. Samet finished with 15 points in the 52-42 the win.
In a game which had blowout vibes in the first half, the Seidel Spartans opened up a double-digit lead, then just barely held off a furious Midrash comeback, for a 44-40 victory.
Midrash erased the gap on the strength of terrific high-percentage shooting, led by Nat Assayag (20 points), but Ben Poloner helped put Seidel over the top with 19.
Symphony Care Network remained undefeated, with a 57-42 win over Baba Sali’s, as Yisroel Wasser scored 21 points, controlling the game from start to finish and keeping Symphony's perfect record intact. Ikey Cohen hit some impressive deep long-range 3-pointers, finishing with 13 for Baba Sali’s.
In a dramatic game that went to overtime, Imrei Binah dug their way out of a hole in regulation against TC, then completed the 37-34 comeback win in the extra frame. Moshe Gross led the Imrei resurgence with 16 points. Regah Ventures put up a dominant performance, with a 53-34 victory over DemiGlaze. Regah led from the starting gun to the finish line, on the strength of Shimmy David's 19 points and the energetic Aaron Mizrachi's 18, as impressive moves by Yoni Bobker for DemiGlaze weren't enough.
In a defensive struggle, the Neveh Fighters came out on top of the Dink Splashes Underdogs, 38-32. Eli Raiden led the way for Neveh with 17 points.
In the game of the week, Cyclone Investment Group and Bmoney Cards went toe to toe, with each team trying to remain undefeated. Ultimately, the Cards dealt Cyclone their first loss, 47-44. Bmoney was led by an extremely balanced scoring attack, overcoming Cyclone's Joey Mishanie's 15 points. Also keeping their record perfect was Chovat Piasecznas, who defeated Samet Team, 66-49. Chovat's superstar duo Zeev Remer and Jesse Spears combined for 49 points, matching the opposition's total. In an offensive onslaught, the Hebrwoos putt up the high score of the week, in a 77-46 win over a short-handed Seidel's squad. The bright spot for Seidel's was Ben Poloner’s 29 points, earning him the week's top scorer accolades.
In a game that began at a tactical, methodical pace, then sped up to a second-half race, the Vikings edged Sinai Schools, 43-39.
The Vikings crew, from Shraga, were led down the stretch by Daniel Totaiv, who traded baskets in the game's waning moments with Sinai's Yonah Tarzik (11 points), from Shalavim. Ezra Sicklick scored 10 points for the Vikings, who pulled away in the final seconds.
With some of the biggest "bigs" the league has to offer on the marquee, Tubi Titans fought Yeshiva League Pass Shaya’s to a virtual deadlock in a closely contested first half, before 19 points by Steven Levian led the Titans to a 51-38 victory. Moshe Heller's 17 points couldn't suffice for the injury-depleted YLP Shaya's.
And in a defensive gem between two lock-down defenses, AISH played a possession game, kept their nerve, and put the game away in the final seconds, with a 27-22 score that some league insiders termed "a Belichikian masterpiece". In the record-setting effort, AISH was led by Avery Steiner, who equaled the Genius from Gillette, with 14 points.