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Gameday Preview: #8 Maimonides vs #9 HAFTR

The #8 seed Maimonides M-Cats will take on the #9 seed HAFTR Hawks on Thursday, March 27th at 11:30 AM in a Tier I qualifier game. The winner of the game will move on to Tier 1, while the loser will fall to the Tier II bracket. 

The Hawks are making their return to Sarachek after not qualifying for the tournament last year. Besides senior Kevin Levy, no other player has played in Sarachek before. Experience can be an issue, as the Max Stern Athletic Center is a tough gym to play in if unfamiliar with it. Look for the Hawks to run their offense through their guards and star center Peter Drukker. The Hawks have looked like a completely different team since Peter Drukker returned from injury: they are playing more in sync, and have been able to attack the paint much more effectively.

Two years ago, Kevin Levy starred in Sarachek as a sophomore. Now a senior, he looks to lead HAFTR into Tier I for the first time since 2015.

(Photo Credit: Leehy Hyman/MacsLive)

The M-Cats are coming into this tournament looking for revenge from last year. They put up a good fight but fell to this year's #2 YULA in a close contest. This year they won 25 straight games, after their season opener loss to TABC in overtime. They made it farther in state this season than the school has ever been. This Maimo team has experience and is comfortable playing in this gym. They are not one of the bigger teams in the tournament, but their excellent help defense keeps the ball out of the paint. Their five-out motion offense aims to keep the Hawks scrambling and leave shots open. 

Both of these teams love shooting the ball from range. This game is likely to be a back-and-forth matchup with both teams exchanging tough baskets. HAFTR wants to show that they are a much better team with Drukker and that they are back in sync, while Maimonides will look to build off their magical season and punch a ticket to play in Tier I. 

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