Memphis Yeshiva Invitational

11-1-2013 | Panthers Cage Hawks, 51-32, Advance to Final Four

11-1-2013 | Panthers Cage Hawks, 51-32, Advance to Final Four

By: Shua Friedman

In the second round, the #3 seed YULA Panthers faced off against the #6 HAFTR Hawks in one of the most anticipated games of the day. Starting the scoring off was Matt Rosenberg for HAFTR with a smooth fast break layup. But soon after, YULA countered with a quick jumper by Adam Liber to start off their scoring. Liber wasn’t done there though, as he came back on the next trip down the court with a 3 from the corner. Soon after, HAFTR made a three pointer to counter the attack by YULA. That started a back and forth between both teams, making the score 13-8. Throughout the first quarter, the 6’5 Himmelman was making his presence known, blocking shots in the paint, grabbing offensive boards, and using his size to control the paint.

YULA started the second quarter with a 13-8 lead. Although the margin was small, it was becoming apparent the Panthers were controlling this game. HAFTR knew it, and started things off aggressively with a steal and a fast break from Mark Spivak, even with the 6’5 Himmelman closing in behind him. Two possessions later, Spivak did the same thing to tie the game at 14. But YULA looked to take back their authority with a swished three from Daniel Tzion. But YULA’s turnover woes continued to plague them, as they turned the ball over on the next three possessions. HAFTR was back in it, only down 19-18 halfway through the quarter. Himmelman kept getting hacked in the paint, and several key layups and free throws gave the Panthers a 26-20 point lead at the end of the half.

Menachem Solomon started off the second half for the Panthers with a pull up mid-range jumper. Then HAFTR did the same thing, with YULA then countering right after with a jumper. YULA started the excitement up when Solomon stole the ball and ran full speed down the court for the easy layup to make the score 32-22. Solomon continued his hot shooting soon afterwards with a three. After a little bit of back and forth playing, the score was 39-28 Panthers going into the 4th quarter.

The Panthers started the fourth quarter, and it looked like they were going for their inside game, cutting and driving to the basket at every opportunity. Two easy buckets from the big man, Himmelman, and a fastbreak by Solomon made the score 45-30 midway through the quarter. The momentum kept guiding the Panthers, as Solomon swished another quick three from the top. With a minute and a half left, the Panthers were just looking to seal their victory, and waste the clock. Their scoring-at-will in the 4th quarter is what let them pull away from the Hawks, and move into the Final Four. The final score was 51-32 in favor of the Panthers. The leading scorer for YULA was Menachem Solomon with 14 points, and Alec Schonfeld led HAFTR with 10 points.

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