JCC Maccabi Games®: Day Three

Ori played a great game today. Perhaps we could also be a future JCC Maccabi soccer coach?

The competition got more intense today as our athletes vied for spots in Thursday’s medal rounds.

Thomas advanced to Thursday's semifinals.

Thomas advanced to Thursday’s semifinals looking calm and confident.

Sam won the tie breaker of a hard fought second match to get to the semifinals.

Sam won a hard-fought second match to advance to the semifinals. His competitor tried to psych him out but couldn’t break his composure.

Jack throws the ball in to resume play.  Both of our boys' soccer teams lost in heart breakers this morning, but they had the time of their lives playing this week.

Jack throws in the ball to resume play. Both of our boys’ soccer teams lost in heartbreakers this morning, but they had the time of their lives playing on mixed teams with athletes from all over North America this week.

Chad scored goals for his mixed team with Mexico.

Chad scored goals for his mixed team with Mexico.

Not pictured in today’s blog is Matan, who got a hat trick (three goals) for his 16U boys’ soccer team on Tuesday and scored again for them today. He was as clutch as can be down the stretch.

Meanwhile, our girls’ basketball team got a bye today, because they were ranked the #1 seed by the JCC Maccabi Games® staff in Dallas!  They play tomorrow against the winners of Wednesday’s games.

This afternoon, all 1,000 of the athletes at the JCC Maccabi Games® took time out from the competition to do community service at one of three JCC Cares sites. Service projects included farming/landscaping and packing food for people in need in Dallas. Taking a break from competition to serve the local community gave all of the athletes perspective heading into the final day.

Tonight we go to Six Flags Hurricane Harbor for the evening event. It’s gonna be fun!

Tradition of the Day:  A unique tradition the Dallas organizers have instituted is giving the athletes dog tags every night with a different Jewish saying or thought. The players get their tags on the buses home from the evening event along with a brief explanation of the meanings and origins of the inscriptions. I love these little nuggets of Jewish culture and how seamlessly they are integrated into the week.

Delegation Head’s Moment of the Day: Today, our tennis and soccer players demonstrated poise and wholeheartedness in competition. Win or lose, they played their guts out with rachmanus to spare. Team Palo Alto is truly a class act. I couldn’t be prouder.

Scores from all the Dallas JCC Maccabi Games® events can be found on the Games’ official website. Remember to follow along on the OFJCC Teens Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages for pictures and videos of our delegation’s experience throughout the competition.

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Rebecca Katz

Written by Rebecca Katz

Rebecca Katz was formerly the OFJCC’s Teen Program Manager, connecting teens with events and programs happening on the OFJCC campus and beyond. She also served as Associate Regional Director of Central Regional West BBYO and the Delegation Head for OFJCC athletes traveling to the JCC Maccabi Games. In her free time, Rebecca is usually found singing somewhere, training in martial arts, or eating ice cream, in that order.

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