The Flatbush Athletic Department held its annual NIGHT of the FALCON on Thursday night (5/24), bringing together the schools student-athletes, coaches and administrators to revel in the athletic achievements of the schools Varsity and JV teams over the course of the 2017-18 season.
After a sumptuous pre-program reception in the Bet Midrash, the attendees soon migrated across the hallway in the school’s Khezrie Auditorium.
All were welcomed by Yeshivah of Flatbush Athletic Director Eric Amkraut, who opened the evening by recognizing the support of the school’s administration as well as the facilities staff, pointing out that without their “behind-the-scenes” efforts all year long, none of the athletic programs would be possible. Mr. Amkraut then recognized the gargantuan efforts all year long of the members of the school’s coaching staff. “It is a part-time job that your coaches put in beyond full-time hours,” stressed Amkraut, “and their dedication to the student-athletes of the Yeshivah are greatly appreciated.” Amkraut then addressed the school’s Varsity and JV Falcons, with a focus on what it means to be a student-athlete.
Mr. Amkraut shared the following words with the group:
“At the core of everything we do in the Athletic Department, there is one driving force – you, the student-athlete.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A STUDENT-ATHLETE? –
The strict definition goes something like this: A student–athlete is a participant in an organized competitive sport sponsored by the educational institution in which he or she is enrolled. Student-athletes are full time students as well as full time athletes.
But in reality, it is so much more than that.
- A student-athlete is dedicated
- A student-athlete understands commitment
- A student-athlete understands exactly what hard work means
- A student-athlete is knows when to lead, and knows when to follow
- A student-athlete knows how to budget time
- A student-athlete can successfully balance athletic and academic responsibilities
- A student-athlete know what it means to sacrifice for the good of the team
- A student-athlete understands that you can do everything right, and still lose – and that is OK
- A student-athlete knows how to reflect on past performance, to put the past behind and always move forward
- A student-athlete is a winner, regardless of what the score is at the end of the game
- A Student-athlete knows how to achieve
- Student-Athletes are winners!
Mr. Amkraut then noted many of the special programs many of the school’s athletic teams have engaged in over the past year, from chesed projects to hosting a team of Elitzur players from Israel to taking part in athletic-themes shabbatonim.
Next, Graduating Senior Student-Athlete Marlene Levy, speaking on behalf of all of her fellow Flatbush Falcons, addressed her peers. Leevy spoke of her four years as a High School Falcon, and of her more than 6 years as a player for Girls Varsity Basketball and Softball Coach Rozan Mizrahi-Loudon. She shared how she grew not only as an athlete but as a person under the guidance of all of her coaches. She expressed how deep a bond she has developed with all of her teammates over her years practicing, training, traveling and competing along side each and every one of them. And, she shared how much she will miss this connection as she moves on after graduation.
Mr. Amkraut then recognized each of the school’s 30 competitive athletic teams. From Baseball to Wrestling (in alphabetical order), he thanked each respective team’s coaches and shared a brief summary of the accomplishments of each and every team during their individual seasons. He also listed the special award winners from each and every team, with coaches presenting the following awards of achievement: Most Improved Player, Sportsmanship Award, Coaches Award and Most Outstanding Player. Additionally, every team captain was recognized with a token of appreciation from the Athletic Department.
A special award was presented to Rabbi Yoni Skolnick. He was presented with The Falcon Award, in recognition of his four years of service – along with Co-Head Coach Eli Amzalag – in re-organizing the school’s Boys Soccer Program, setting it on a path of skill development and team competitiveness that as set the program on an upward trend. (He will be leaving the program at the end of the school year, as he has accepted an administrative position at the SAR Elementary School in Riverdale, NY.)
Lastly, the Most Outstanding Senior Student-Athletes were recognized. Both male and female winners of this award are not only amazing athletes, they are true leaders. Both captained two different athletic teams and both went above and beyond in elevating the Flatbush Falcon Athletic Program. The 2018 winners are Marlene Levy and Yaron Sternberg.
The event concluded with a dessert reception in the Student Lounge, at which time all the individual award winners were presented their awards.
It was an amazing night, filled with great memories that will surely last a lifetime. Once a Falcon, always a Falcon!
NEST NOTES: No program of this sort can be successful without significant A/V support. Many thanks to Paula Berkovitz and Jonathan Baum for their work in supporting the A/V needs of the event.
An extra-special note of thanks to Jonathan Baum for his work in producing the Athletic Video Montage (click HERE to see the 2017-18 Athletic Video Montage).