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Philadelphia, PA June 27, 2018 – The Maccabi USA Organizing Committee is pleased to announce 20 athletes and four coaches, and General Chair of Maccabi Youth Games from New Jersey have been appointed as members of the USA delegation for the upcoming Maccabi Youth Games, which will take place in Israel, July 22-August 2, 2018.

The athletes are Simone Amkraut of Berkeley Heights, NJ, Youth Women’s Basketball; Edan Blecher of Princeton, NJ, Youth Men’s Basketball; Max Blecher of Princeton, NJ, Youth Men’s Basketball; Samantha Edelman of Fanwood, NJ, Youth Women’s Soccer; Ashley Friedman of Green Brook, NJ, Youth Women’s Softball; Jake Horne of Short Hills, NJ, Youth Men’s Baseball; Jesse Janson of Jersey City, NJ, Youth Rugby 7’s; Adam Kochman of Glen Rock, NJ, Youth Men’s Soccer; Jayna Kramsky of Marlboro, NJ, Youth Women’s Softball; Daniel Levine of Livingston, NJ, Youth Men’s Baseball; Ariel Melumad of Tenafly, NJ, Youth Women’s Volleyball; David Miller of Franklin Lakes, NJ, Youth Men’s Baseball; Avi Peled of Livingston, NJ, Youth Men’s Basketball; Jason Schulman of Montvale, NJ, Youth Men’s Basketball; Zach Schwartz of Bridgewater, NJ, Youth Men’s Baseball; Emily Talkow of North Caldwell, NJ, Youth Women’s Softball; Max Warech of Morristown, NJ, Youth Men’s Soccer; Jordan Weisner of Fort Lee, NJ, Youth Men’s Baseball; Abbey Weltman of Wayne, NJ, Youth Women’s Basketball; and Sharon Yudes of Fair Lawn, NJ, Youth Women’s Volleyball. Dr. Marc Backal of Voorhees, NJ will serve as General Chair of Team USA, Josh Brodkin of Marlton, NJ will serve as an Assistant Coach for one of the Youth Men’s Baseball Teams, Steven Gittleman of Northfield, NJ, will serve as a Head Coach for one of the Youth Basketball Teams, Eric Katz of Watchung, NJ will serve as Head Coach for one of the Youth Men’s Baseball Teams, and Josh Katz of Watchung, NJ will serve as Assistant Coach for one of the Youth Men’s Baseball Teams.

There will be six days of competition, followed by three days of touring based in Jerusalem. The other countries competing include Argentina, Brazil, Canada, France, Great Britain, Holland, Hungary, Israel, Italy, South Africa, and Spain.

The Maccabi Youth Games will provide the athletes an opportunity to compete internationally and connect with Jewish athletes from around the world and the State of Israel.

Maccabi USA builds Jewish pride through sports, generating the emotional intensity, high ideals, and powerful camaraderie of competition. We connect athletes, volunteers, and supporters with the global Jewish community. Our athletic, educational, and cultural experiences build Jewish identity, perpetuate Jewish continuity worldwide, and strengthen support for the State of Israel.

The Magic of Maccabi combines a passion of Israel and athletics. The team members are excited to be part of the delegation heading to Israel in just under a month for the inaugural Maccabi Youth Games!

For more information about Maccabi USA, please contact Shane Carr at 215.561.6900 x4147 or by email at

About the organization:

Maccabi USA (MUSA) enriches Jewish lives through athletic, cultural and educational programs. The Organization is the official sponsor of the United States Team to the World Maccabiah Games, and the Pan American and European Maccabi Games, as well as a sponsor of the JCC Maccabi Games for teens in North America.  As the official Maccabi representative in the U.S., Maccabi USA supports Jewish athletic endeavors, enhanced by cultural and educational activities in the United States, Israel and throughout the Diaspora

MUSA develops, promotes and supports international, national and regional athletic-based activities and facilities.  It strives to provide Jewish athletes all over the world the opportunity to share their heritage and customs in competitive athletic settings.  MUSA supports programs that embody the Maccabi ideals of Jewish Continuity, Zionism and Excellence in Sport.  Maccabi USA Builds Jewish Pride Through Sports.

Maccabi USA is a U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) Multi-Sport Organization (MSO). The Organization is one of 38 MSOs nationwide to be recognized by the USOC for its ability to cultivate a national interest in sport and increase opportunities for participation internationally, nationally and at the grassroots level, and is rated as a four-star non-profit by Charity Navigator.


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