American football in Israel: Tov Pizza beats Klein Management

Double-overtime thriller brings Tov Pizza into the Holyland Bowl.

football feb 12 298 88 (photo credit: Shana Sprung)
football feb 12 298 88
(photo credit: Shana Sprung)
Tov Pizza beats Klein Management in double-overtime thriller to reach Holyland Bowl Tov Pizza will face Big Blue in the 2006 Heritage Affinity AFI Holyland Bowl at 9:15 p.m. on Saturday, February 18, at Kraft Family Stadium in Jerusalem. In the first of two semifinals last Saturday night in front of a capacity crowd at Kraft, Tov Pizza overcame a determined Klein Management team 26-20 after two overtimes. Big Blue rolled over Seidemann & Mermelstein 40-6 in its semifinal to reach the national flag football championship game. Fairmont Funding advanced to the Terem Bowl in memory of Dr. David Applebaum with a 27-20 victory over Waxman Warriors Saturday night. The Terem Bowl is scheduled to be played prior to the Holyland Bowl at 8 p.m. Saturday, February 18. Pizzeria Efrat returns after mourning captain Mordechai Goodman, whose son Yosef died on February 2 in an IDF paratrooper training accident, brought his team, Pizzeria Efrat, back to the football field for an emotional Terem Bowl quarterfinal against T.C. Farbmans. American Football in Israel President Steve Leibowitz led the players and officials in a moment of silence and tribute to Yosef prior to the game, which T.C. Farbmans won 38-6. "We are honored by Mordechai's dedication to the league and express our unity with the Goodman family during this difficult time," Leibowitz said at midfield before kickoff. During its Holyland Bowl semifinal, Tov Pizza's players wore the #8 on their jerseys in memory of Yosef. In other Heritage Affinity AFI playoff games, it was: Boston Friends 32, Silver Hammers 25; METV 46, Canaan Studio 12; Boston Friends 31, Forefingers 28; Derech Etz Chaim 59, Israel 21C 18; Cobras 36, Travaglini 6; METV 32, Jerusalem Foundation 28. Big Blue women win Fieldturf WAFI title Blue Blue capped an undefeated championship season (12-0) by shutting out Jump Gym 40-0 in the 2005/06 Fieldturf Women's American Football in Israel title game last Wednesday night at Kraft Family Stadium in Jerusalem. The loss to Big Blue ended Jump's "Cinderella" playoff run. After finishing the regular season at 4-5, Jump Gym made it all the way to the final. Jump started the game on offense and marched all the way down into Big Blue's red zone, only to be stopped on fourth down by a swarming Big Blue defense. After the change of possession it took Big Blue quarterback Shana Sprung just five plays to hook up with Yael Freedman in the back of the end zone for the first score of the game. Sprung threw three more first-half touchdowns, two to Rivka Ross, and another to Freedman, and by halftime Big Blue was in command 26-0. On Big Blue's first possession of the second half it was more of the same with Sprung hooking up with Ross on a deep pass. After catching the ball at the five-yard line, Ross made several razzle-dazzle moves into the end zone, making it 32-0. Mitch "don't call me Michal" Berns caught Sprung's sixth and final TD pass, and center Ahuva Odenheimer made a nice catch for a two-point conversion to cap the scoring. Big Blue's Davida Loecher picked off a Jump pass late in the game that put an exclamation point on the win. Despite the defeat, the women of Jump Gym, who are all studying at the Michlelet Esther seminary, left the field with their heads held high, knowing they had a great season. All ten teams that competed in the fall/winter Fieldturf WAFI are already gearing up for the spring season, which will start in March. No surprises in co-ed league: Kfar Zippori and Josh Shuman to meet in Devorah Schechter Catering Bowl Two-time defending champion Kfar Zippori will play in its third straight Tuesday Night Football League championship game after shutting out Pardes 18-0 in a semifinal last week. Josh Shuman disposed of Big Blue 34-8 to set up the Devorah Schechter Catering Bowl matchup, which will be played at 9 p.m. on Tuesday, February 15, at Kraft Family Stadium in Jerusalem. Big Blue and Pardes will play in the TNFL third-place game Tuesday night. In the fifth-place game last week, an HUC derby, the HUC Mullet Men defeated HUC-YA 33-0. For more information on American Football in Israel, visit or contact Jay L. Abramoff at or 054-440-2659.