Another year goes bye , the kids grow older and go through their phases of life, hopefully appropriate for their age , we enjoy and revel in it . Some played in the tournament as 15 year olds and now have 15 year olds – 31 years will do that .
This was a season of new faces and new opportunities . Having 10 new Rising Stars was a challenge. As much as i like to have new players , i like them to be Fire Islanders. Some were friends of friends , most had seen the Tournament and wanted to play in it. I think that they got a taste of what it is all about and will be back next year. This is how it keeps going, keep being inclusive and it will all work out. Funny how many calls i got that last week before the draft- Matthew and I were on the phone a lot more than we wanted to be. How can you say no to Murray if he wants to add his son? Or Jon Bloom who played once back in the day? Or Alex Chili who wanted to come from Washington DC to play . Or Yuri and Sanjeev , Jonthan Noury , Josh Schechter , Zach Cohen or Josh Albert? They all knew someone, they all had seen the Tourny, they all had played a little pick up . And what about Luca Biro , whose Dad was the BEST DISHWASHER i ever had??? His mother emailed me to put him in – luckily Tyler S knew him and pushed for him.
Jeff and Amy Mitnick running the Kids Tourney that had 50 kids this year. How great is that?
The old timers keep on coming back but sooner rather than later it will be time for them to move up into administration. Ricky Weissman getting surgery next week. Greg Slater turned 60 this year , Stranksy was 63 . Carey Lyons hit 62 – Frenchy hit 60 too . Tennis is a wonderful game gents – Stransky started playing with us this year, hope a few more of you sign up .
What a great night of Friendship at Chris Brahe’s and Marc Millman’s Hall of Fame Night . Laughter , emotion , love , i can never get enough of that.
Had a lot of BBAll moments – Roy hits 2 fouls shots, BK leads Orange over Gold in the first weekend , Neil K and I talking about Doug Gardner and his son Mike , Max Raphelson hits 3 pointers , Matt Cov is going to have twins !! and he was in great condition this season again , Kevin Pohmer and the refs have that special bond, Jeff Sorkin hits 8/9 in a game , Alex C hits a bomb during the Final, Adam Eastman hitting his jumper floating , Pullman with his son Jacob playing together and Adam hitting for 19 one game , Luca Biro’s Thunder jams, Mitch Grabow still has the highest shooting % in the league , Doug Worth comes back , Jordan Levine gets hurt and still plays , Justin Schnell and Zach French trying desperately to get their team wins, same for Arie Hendeles. Alec S can’t keep quiet but he hits some great drives , Paul S outscores Justin in the first half of a game, Ron Gonen grabs an offensive rebound , Big Bill gets knocked out with a concussion, Al Lewin hits a couple of shady hooks in a row , Zach Cohen drilling 3’s in the Final along with Mike Lubowitz. Ethan just being too big and strong for everyone else this year.
Next year will be another story – Thank you all for being such good sports and being so kind to one another. Friendships made here will last a lifetime. No real injuries this year because of a dumb elbow or anything like that . Arie took a shot above the eye but he was back the next game. Everything went very smoothly ( scoreboard antennae ) and everyone was super helpful. I’ll be in touch through the email during the rest of the year . Stay in touch with one another , play ball with one another , have a meal with one another , enjoy one another . We are a very special and unusual group – let’s keep it that way for another 31 years ..