Monday, September 25, 2017

Four of Frisch’s graduating seniors—captains Mark Abramovitz, RJ Fischer, Rafi Jacobs and Jake Lebovitch—have been key components of its baseball team.

This week the Jewish Link of New Jersey and Gotham Burger would like to recognize four tremendous athletes who helped the Frisch Cougars become the Columbus Baseball Invitational champions earlier this year. Cougars Head Coach David Ruditzky told The Jewish Link, “All four of these boys should be Sportstars of the Week since all four are captains and four year players. These four dominated in the Columbus tournament.” Coach Ruditzky continued, “Game one was a complete game, one hitter by Rafi Jacobs. Game three, another complete game, this time from RJ Fischer with an amazing job catching by Mark Abramovitz. Game four, yet another complete game by Jake Lebovitch in a pitchers duel. In the third game, Abromovitz turned in a spectacular play— running down the first base line on a wide throw to first and then gunned down the runner trying to advance to second.”

We had the pleasure of getting to know the Cougars’ Fantastic Four a little better.

Mark Abramovitz is an 18 year old recent graduate of The Frisch School and will be playing this summer on the Junior USA National Team in the Maccabi Games in Israel. Mark’s role model is his paternal grandfather, a Holocaust survivor who has always been a symbol of perseverance and devotion to family. Mark’s favorite athlete is Derek Jeter, because he always plays with the utmost class and respect for his teammates and for the game. Mark tries not to eat too much before games. He arrives at the field an hour early and does 30 minutes of stretching followed by long toss and then catching a bullpen for the starting pitcher. His earliest sports memory is drawing a walk-off walk in second grade. His weirdest sports memory takes him back to freshman year. Frisch was playing a game against Kushner that had a strict time limit, so all of the base runners ran out of the base path back into the dugout with a two-run lead to force them to play the last half inning so they could preserve the win.

RJ Fischer is a 17 year old recent graduate of The Frisch School. His role models are his parents; he sees how hard they work and aspires to be like them. RJ told us that his parents taught him a mantra that he lives by every day: “Quitters never win and winners never quit.” RJ’s greatest athletic accomplishment is achieving his goal of becoming a college athlete, as he will be playing for Baruch next year. His favorite professional athlete is Alex Rodriguez. “When I first started following sports in 2004 I asked my dad who the best player was. He said A-Rod. And he’s been my favorite player since then.” RJ likes to eat a lot the day he pitches so he has carbs to burn. The pre-game begins an hour before the first pitch—he does 10 minutes of each exercise leading up to his start: running, aerobic exercises, bands, static exercises, long toss and finally he heads to the bullpen to warm up.

Rafi Jacobs is an 18 year old recent graduate of The Frisch School. His role models are his parents because they “really have taught me how to carry myself and be a respectful person.” Rafi’s favorite athlete is Vince Carter. “The man can fly.” Before each game Rafi likes to stretch and chill. His earliest sport memory is having his brother teach him to play baseball in their backyard. When not playing ball Rafi likes learning and working out. The best thing about being a Sportstar? Steak sandwiches.

Jake Lebovitch is also an 18 year old recent graduate of The Frisch School. His greatest sports accomplishment is being a member of a team that won three yeshiva league championships and two Columbus Invitational championships. Jake’s favorite professional athlete is Stephen Strasburg. “He’s my favorite pitcher; I look up to his pitching style and talent. That’s why I wear number 37.” Before each start he likes to to listen to his music and get pumped. His earliest baseball memory would have to be playing baseball with his mom at age four or five in front of their apartment with a big red bat. For Jake, the best part of being a Sportstar is being able to, hopefully, inspire other little kids to want to be successful student athletes and become Sportstars themselves.

The Jewish Link of New Jersey and Gotham Burger Sportstars of the Week will receive a $10 gift certificate to Gotham Burger. Please send nominees for next week’s Jewish Link of New Jersey and Gotham Burger Sportstar of the Week to [email protected].

 By JLNJ Sports Desk