Hanukkah playpicThis year’s IAB Hanukkah events were a great success.
The regional one-day Hanukkah tournament, held throughout Israel on Friday December 19, was enjoyed by all the players and spectators. There were 29 teams playing at 8 different venues on 10 fields around the country – seven Minors teams played on three fields in Hashmonaim and Modiin; 12 Juveniles teams played in the Tiva Pelter Tournament in the Baptist Village in Petah Tikvah, Ra’anana, Tel Mond and Tzofit; and eight Cadets teams played in Ra’anana, Tel Aviv and Gezer. The minors, playing in the Eliyahu Jackson Tournament, did not play a competitive tournament. Results for each venue of the Juveniles and Cadets tournament are as follows:
Juveniles: Raanana - winner: Raanana; Tel Mond - winner: Lev Hasharon Nationals; Zofit - winner: Hashmonaim; Baptist Village - winner: Yad Benyamin.
Cadets: Tel Aviv - winner: Rehovot; Raanana - winner: Ginot Shomron Hawks; Gezer - winner: Beit Shemesh.
Congratulations to the winners and participants.

The second annual All Stars day beat the weather and was held on Sunday December 21 at the Baptist Village in Petah Tikvah. The day began with a skills competition for Minors, Juveniles and Cadets. An excellent turnout meant that the players had a fun competition, with lots of competitors taking their turns at five stations – batting, pitching, base running, infield and fly balls. There were winners in each age group for each of the stations, and overall winners for each age group. Participants and their families then enjoyed a BBQ.
A memorial ceremony was held for Howie Osterer z”l, with a speech from IAB President Peter Kurtz and a presentation by Chief Umpire Leon Klarfeld to Howie’s daughter Nina, of Howie’s umpire shirt in frame, showing his umpire number, 55, which will be retired from use. Next, Juniors League Commissioner Aryeh Klein lit the Hanukkah candle.
Nina threw out the first pitch for the first ever Juniors All Star game. The two teams – North and South – played in a very closely contested game. Ultimately, in a very close finish, the South edged out the North 8-7.
A big thanks to all the organizers, the Juniors All Star players who ran the Skills Competition stations, the volunteer helpers, coaches, umpires and all the participants and their families for making this a very special day.

For more on these events, click here for the video.