Friendship Games: New heights

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Friendship Games: New heights
Jun 25, 2018

By Julia Karron

EILAT, Israel – After a jam-packed day of basketball, participants at this year’s Friendship Games scaled new heights by rock climbing at Top49 in Eilat. Players were split up into groups that mixed the countries based on colored wrist bands.

While rock climbing was the big hit of the night, players also got the opportunity to bungee jump off of a platform, shoot bows and arrows and arm wrestle. The arm wrestling competition determined the winner of the player’s time at Top94, and the team with the purple wristbands won.

Games of the Day

Men’s Division

Ukraine 40, Jordan 36

The Jordanian men’s team hadn’t won a game at the Friendship Games as long as Ronnen Tinn could remember. In this tournament alone, they’ve rattled off two big wins, and were looking to grab their third against a tough Ukrainian squad. Jordan’s coach said that “even (if) we lose…be with each other…help playing, relax.” Ukrainian coach Leonid Derbaba had a similar sentiment, saying he was “looking for a really good match.”

Before the tournament the Jordanian team had struggled because they weren’t quite friendly with each other because they “didn’t know each other very well.” But since their coach “make bad ideas (get) out of their head” they’ve come together as a team.

One Jordanian player said of this matchup that it’s a “hard game, but tournament is so good.”

So when the Jordanians lost in a close affair with six ties and six lead changes, their coach simply said “we are the reason we lose this game in the last 2 minutes. I am really proud of my team. They need more time together.”

Women’s Division

Ukraine 57, Israeli Arabic 16

Ukraine’s three-point shooting and height advantage kept it undefeated in pool play against the smaller Israel Arabic team. Ukraine knocked down two quick threes in the opening minute and a half. Ukraine and Lithuania are the only undefeated teams remaining in the tournament.

Israeli Arabic point guard Mariam Jarjora said that in today’s game, her team’s “goal is to win” and that they “have hope.” When asked how ASA would find a way to win she joked that they’d need “two of me” stacked on top of each other to compete with Ukraine’s height advantage.

After Aula Ghabres’s early three pointer in the first quarter, Israel Arabic were held scoreless in the second quarter.

The event’s organizers sponsored student coverage of the Friendship Games. Editorial control of the coverage and content remained with the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism and the Philip Merrill College of Journalism.

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