Yeshiva University is set to host the 20th Annual Henry Wittenberg Wrestling Invitational from Friday, February 13, through Monday, February 16, at the Max Stern Athletic Center on Yeshiva University’s Wilf Campus in uptown Manhattan. Sponsored entirely by YU, the program will bring together 250 wrestlers from 15 yeshiva high schools across the country.
In addition to the exciting wrestling competition, the long weekend will also include a Shabbaton complete with communal meals, spirited games, a tribute to YU wrestling Coach Neil Ellman and tournament coordinator Brian Ostrow, and an inspirational lecture by two-time Paralympic Games gold medalist Marlon Shirley, the “world’s fastest amputee.”
“This weekend is the highlight of the Yeshiva High School wrestling calendar. It is an opportunity for young Jewish athletes to bond with each other in a Torah environment, to be inspired, to elevate their wrestling performances, and to begin thinking about their ability to compete in a shomer Shabbat collegiate environment that allows them to grow as Jews and citizens of society,” said Rabbi Kenneth Brander, the vice president of university and community life.
Participating schools include Atlanta Jewish Academy (Atlanta, GA), Davis Renov Stahler (Long Island, NY), Derech HaTorah (Brooklyn, NY), Fuchs Mizrachi (Beachwood, OH), Ida Crown Jewish Academy (Chicago, IL), Kushner Academy (Livingston, NJ), Maimonides (Brookline, MA), Marsha Stern Talmudic Academy (New York, NY), New Community Jewish High School (Los Angeles, CA), North Shore Hebrew Academy (Great Neck, NY), Rav Teitz Mesivta Academy (Elizabeth, NJ), SAR Academy High School (Riverdale, NY), The Frisch School (Paramus, NJ), Torah Academy of Bergen County (Teaneck, NJ), and Westchester Hebrew High School (Westchester, NY).
The annual event preserves the memory of Henry Wittenberg, a former Yeshiva University wrestling coach and legendary Olympic medalist who founded the university’s wrestling program in 1955. Wittenberg passed away in 2010 at the age of 91.
Marking its milestone 20th year, the tournament will culminate on Monday, February 16, with words of encouragement from YU wrestling Coach Neil Ellman and tournament coordinator Brian Ostrow, the Championship Finals round, and an awards ceremony. The highlight of the awards ceremony will be the unveiling of the Jack Merkin Most Outstanding Wrestler Award, which commemorates YU alumnus Jack Merkin, a talented student athlete who benefited greatly from the mentorship of Coach Wittenberg.
For results and complete coverage of Monday’s matches, tune in to www.macslive.com.