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Gameday Preview: #7 Ida Crown vs. #10 Ramaz

The #7 Ida Crown Aces are set to clash with the #10 Ramaz Rams in a high-stakes Tier I qualifying matchup that promises to be a nail-biter.

Ida Crown, entering Sarachek as the #7 seed for the second year in a row, is fueled by a burning desire to prove itself after a disappointing loss last year. They were defeated 60-43 by Katz, but bounced back with a resounding victory over Farber, securing their spot in Tier II. Despite a narrow loss to #15 TABC in the Tier II Quarterfinals, the Aces are more determined than ever to make a mark this year.

The Ida Crown Aces will look to win their first Tier I game in 13 years when they go up against the Ramaz Rams on Thursday. (Photo Credit: @ICJA Hoops on IG)

This season, the Aces, with a 14-8 record, are a force to be reckoned with. They are led by the dynamic duo of 6’2” guard Jakob Wortman and 6’4” forward Avi Okner. Wortman, a 2023 Sarachek All-Star, is a standout player and one of the tournament's premier guards. Rounding out the duo, Okner brings versatility to the Aces with his ability to score both inside and outside, making him a potential game-changer against the Rams.

Entering Sarachek with a fully healthy team for the first time since the sixth week of the season, the Aces are poised and ready to bring their A-game. Okner, Wortman, and 5’10” guard Aryeh Neiger, have all recovered from their respective injuries, and are set to execute their signature 1-3-1 zone scheme. The anticipation is high as the Aces prepare to unleash their game plan on the court.

Ramaz did not play in Sarachek last year but went 10-4 in the regular season, good for second place in the Yeshiva League Western Conference. However, in the Quarterfinals, they could not defend the long ball against HAFTR and were defeated at home 65-52. The Rams are known for their depth and hard-nosed-man defense.

The Rams are led by 6’1” forward Isaac Ohayon, who will look to trouble Ida Crown. Expect them to run their offense through him. Milan Kushner is another 6’1” forward who has been an excellent secondary scoring option all season for Ramaz.

Both Ida Crown and Ramaz are strong teams looking to make a statement that they belong in Tier I this year. Ramaz was a top-2 team in the Western Conference and only took one bad loss against HAFTR in the Quarterfinals. Ida Crown played a competitive schedule and is looking to make Tier I for the first time in 13 years. Tip-off is scheduled for 1:00 PM at the Max Stern Athletic Center, and will also be streaming right here on MacsLive, broadcasted by Mekor Chaim Coach Harold Katz, and panel picks members Akiva Poppers and Oren Glickman.

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