Or Chaim centre earns all-star accolades
April 10, 2012 | Jack Borenstein - Correspondent
TORONTO – Centre Josh Teller concluded his Yeshivat Or Chaim Knights basketball career by being named an all star at the 21st annual Red Sarachek Tournament held March 22-26 at Yeshiva University in New York.
The 17-year-old Toronto resident averaged 12.3 points and 12 rebounds and led his team to the Tier III playoff final where they lost 54-52 to Maimonides.
Teller said the Knights opening loss was partially due to their opponent “playing zone defence while our team usually plays man-to-man defence. Also our starting shooting guard Jonathan Wesfield suffered a concussion early on from an elbow hit and would miss the rest of the tournament.
“During our second game we made the necessary adjustments and closed the deficit to three points, but our rally fell short.”
In their third game Knights defeated Hillel 48-46 with co-captain/guard Yehuda Eklove scoring 17 points and Teller contributing 14 points and 14 rebounds.
“Hillel’s Joseph Ammar (who led all scorers with 21 points) was one of the best players I ever faced. Josh Herman stole the ball on their inbound pass in the last few seconds to ensure our victory.”
Against Maimonides, Teller scored 11 points despite being double teamed.
“We were up by six late in the game when they made a three-point play and on their next possession sunk a trey to tie the score.
“Our plan was to hold the ball for one last shot but we were called for travelling and Maimonides made a lay up with two and a half seconds left. We got the ball to mid-court but couldn’t make a last desperation shot.”
Teller was honoured being named tourney all star and enjoyed Shabbat at Yeshiva University, where he met players from the 19 other teams (including Montreal’s Hebrew Academy High School).
“Our team won a Jeopardy-based trivia competition involving sports and Torah and took home mini footballs marked with Yeshiva University’s logo.”
He credited Knight head coach Jason Blackwood for helping his defence, along with confidence and support during his career.
“Coach Blackwood is an inspiration for me on and off the court and we’ll be friends for a long time.”
Teller will attend Yeshivat Reishit in Beit Shemesh (about 30 kilometres from Jerusalem) this autumn.
“I love basketball and look forward to continue playing the sport at the Reishit’s court facility.”