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The Israel Association of Baseball will be holding a week-long, two-division Hanukkah tournament following its training season, which began in early September.
Jerusalem's Kraft Family Stadium, which was upgraded with Fieldturf artificial grass last winter, will host the first games of the Juvenile Division (ages 9-12) Tournament on December 27, beginning at 10 a.m.
The Juvenile Division Tournament is named in memory of Tiva Pelter, a dedicated coach and sports instructor who was instrumental in the development of baseball in the Sharon Region and the country.
The tournament follows the fall training season in which players returned after a six-month break from league play. Many players of this age level have grown since last season and need time to adjust.
In addition, for those moving up from the younger division the game is more challenging, with player pitching instead of coach pitching, balls and strikes called at bat and stealing bases introduced at this level.
The tournament is not primarily competitive, but rather for players to try and improve in their baseball skills over the course of a week's games. These were codes that Tiva believed in her life.
The Cadet Division (ages 13-15) Tournament is named in memory of Dr. Ami Cohen, a pediatric heart surgeon and founder of the "Save a Child's Heart" program at Wolfson Hospital. Not only did Dr. Cohen make a tremendous mark in his professional life, he also earned a special place in the IAB as a coach and trainer for baseball players.
All of the Cadet Division games will be played outside of Jerusalem due to the lack of baseball fields in the city for the higher level of play.
The full schedule of the Hanukkah tournaments and more information on IAB activities are available at www.iab.org.il.
The IAB's Jerusalem Regional Director can be reached at 02-672-7974 or [email protected]