Recap: winter sports wow


Geoff Chesman

The girls varsity basketball team celebrates their championship banner.

Eliana Wolf and Mia Forseter

The winter sports season came to an exciting end Saturday night with CESJDS fans storming the basketball court after the girls varsity basketball team won the PVAC championship game. After trailing most of the game, the Lions’ completed a comeback and won 41-37. 

The girls varsity basketball team’s championship win followed an eventful regular season, with highlights such as junior and captain Shani Schwartz scoring her 1000th point, a mid-season tournament in Canada, and the double overtime game against Melvin J. Berman Hebrew Academy in December.

“I think the nice thing about this team is they really come together as friends through basketball,” Becky Silberman, Director of Athletics and girls varsity basketball head coach said. “Yes, some of them are like friends outside but it’s not really more than like three people at a time. So basketball really has been an escape for everyone.”

Their counterpart, the boys varsity basketball team finished with an overall record of 22-7, losing to Sandy Springs, the top-seeded team in the league, in the semi-finals. 

According to junior and captain Sam Sharp, the team dynamic was very strong, with each player supporting one another. Coming into the season most players knew each other from the previous year, but shared experiences such as the Canada tournament was a great opportunity for them to bond.

“Everyone I feel has connected with everyone on the team in some way, shape or form,” Sharp said. “We’ve all grown as players on and off the court as well.”

While the boys junior varsity didn’t have as many games as the varsity team, finishing with an overall record of 7-6, they were still able to progress and grow as a team, according to freshman Leo Steindecker. 

“We each got better and we just pushed each other,” Steindecker said. “It was competitive while everyone’s still friends with each other. So it was a great experience.”

The boys and girls middle school basketball teams had their own successes, such as the girls middle school basketball team finishing as the fourth seed in the PVAC, and an overall record of 7-4. They finished their season strong, winning their last three consecutive in-conference games. The boys had a record of 10-4, and a memorable highlight included eight-grader Aviv Stein’s game-winning shot against WCA. 

While the dance team does not compete against other schools, they were excited to perform at a high school Kab Shab and a basketball game. 

“I think people are definitely getting better at picking up steps faster,” sophomore Navah Gris said. “It’s very encouraging, people will always cheer you on.”

They look forward to the spring season, where they are running a student-led club and will have more performances, with hopes to perform at another Kab Shab. 

The wrestling team had many changes this season, with sixth-grader Lilah Meyerstein being the first female wrestler on the JDS wrestling team, and six out of the seven players joining the team for the first time.

The swim team finished the season with the boys placing second place in the championship, and the girls placing fourth. The swim team as whole, however, faces unique challenges because of its size.

“The fact that it’s a smaller team means we have to try harder than we would normally if there are a lot of swimmers, ” junior Ariella Litwack said. “… And since it’s a small team, we all are friends.”

The winter track team, consisting of both middle and high school students, had their own memorable experiences this season. While they only had one indoor track meet at Georgetown Prep, they had many intersquad meets throughout the season to measure their progress. Because of the close-knit track community, everyone felt the absence of the seniors in the second half of the season. 

“[It’s] sad to see them leave, but it’s nice to have them pass on their legacy,” junior and captain Hannah May said. “And now we can run, stepping into their shoes.”