On Thursday, March 24th, the SAR Sting will play against the Berman Cougars for a spot in Tier I. The Sting enter the tournament as the number one seed while the Cougars are the 16th seed. SAR is coming off a heartbreaking loss in the Yeshiva League championship game to the #7 seeded Ramaz Rams. The Sting held a 16 point lead at one point in the third quarter, but weren’t able to hold on, eventually allowing the game winning bucket with 12 seconds left. Akiva Schanzer and Netanel “Nitty” Hyman run the backcourt for this team. The two juniors do a great job keeping everything under control, which can be extremely valuable in a tournament like Sarachek. They will look to help their team bounce back as the top seed in the tournament.
The Berman Cougars come into today’s action a couple weeks removed from their season. They lost in a slugfest against the top seeded team in their conference in the semifinals. Berman runs a three guard lineup with a lot of speed and quickness, but the big senior captain, Andrew Pinchot, gives them size and versatility as he is able to stretch out defenses by stepping outside the paint and knocking down shots. Berman will look to pull off a big upset and make it to Tier I. The winner of this game will advance to the Tier I quarterfinals, while the loser will play in the Tier II qualifier on Friday.
Firstly, Sarachek is an extremely intense and hype atmosphere. It’s key for teams to remain under control and not play too fast or haphazardly. Ben Winters will have to keep his team relaxed as the starting point guard for the Cougars, while Netanel Hyman tries to do the same for the Sting. Secondly, in these tournaments, it is crucial that teams bring high energy down low fighting for rebounds. Two guys, who can both be described as “glue guys,” Benjamin Neuwirth for SAR and Simon Goldberg for Berman, will play a massive role in the painted area. These games are often won by the hustle plays here-and-there, and in this category these guys can contribute in a big way.
The winner of this matchup will face the winner of (8) Flatbush vs (9) Katz in the Tier I quarterfinals on Friday. The loser will face (17) HAFTR on Friday in the Tier II qualifier.
This Tier I qualifier will take place in the Max Stern Athletic Center and tip off will be at 10:00 am. The game will be broadcast by MacsLive; you can watch the game live here.