Written by Vinny Messana Thursday, 12 September 2013 00:00
Representing Team USA is a tremendous honor, even for athletes and coaches who have had illustrious careers in their respective sports. For Bill Jaffe, it was extra special, coming full circle.
A former standout hockey player at the University of Michigan in the late 1980s, Jaffe had the honor of coaching the USA men’s ice hockey team to a silver medal in the Maccabiah tournament in Israel last month. It was the first time that ice hockey was a part of the tournament since 1997, when Jaffe was team captain.
“It was a wonderful experience being with that group of players,” said the 44-year-old Williston Park resident. “The players were fantastic people and did everything they were asked. It was a real treat.”
The Maccabiah is an international sporting event for Jewish athletes held in Israel every four years. The athletes are generally aged between 19 and 25. The event involves nearly every sport and has featured notable athletes such as Mark
Spitz, who won seven Olympic gold medals as a swimmer.
Overall, Team USA finished second out of 19 participating countries with 191 medals during the tournament. Only Israel finished ahead of them, with 411.
Hockey is not a very popular sport in Israel, which posed a bit of a challenge. There is only one full size rink in the entire country. Jaffe called it a “unique experience,” coming back 16 years later.
“Going as a coach, I viewed it from a different perspective,” he said. “I understand things a little different now.”
Since his time as a player, Jaffe has been around the NHL for 15 years as a color commentator and analyst on various networks. He began with the Chicago Blackhawks’ radio network and moved on to the Atlanta Thrashers before making a name for himself as the New York Islanders commentator alongside veteran game-caller Howie Rose. He is now an analyst on the NHL Network.
Still, Jaffe’s greatest thrill is being involved with the development of the next breed of great hockey players. “Playing in Israel gave these players great experience that will benefit them.”
Last Updated (Monday, 29 November 1999 19:00) Friday, 01 August 2014 00:00
15 Below, an alternative rock band composed of Sewanhaka High School students, rocked the William Gill Theatre in New Hyde Park Village Hall on Wednesday, July 23. The band had the crowd tossing up beach balls to energetic beats and swaying their iPhones along to slower tunes.
“They were very good tonight,” said Darren Derick Polanco. “I always come to their shows.”
Last Updated (Monday, 29 November 1999 19:00) Thursday, 31 July 2014 00:00
New Hyde Park Village trustee Donald Barbieri contends helicopters are still flying right over New Hyde Park and other residential parts of the north shore, harming citizens and the town with excessive and unlawful aircraft noise. In spite of what federal law says and in spite of what a federal court says, the noise levels are still an issue.
Barbieri drafted a letter to the Federal Aviation Administration, apprising the entity of New Hyde Park’s situation. The FAA did not return calls for comment.
Thursday, 31 July 2014 00:00
Students at Charles Water Karate & Fitness, located at 122 Hillside Avenue in Williston Park recently received belt promotions after successfully completing a series of extensive exams.
“Our goal at Charles Water Karate & Fitness is to facilitate mental growth enabling our students to reach their highest potential as human beings,” says Charles Water, owner and director of the school.
“Our studio teaches students how to defend themselves responsibly while instilling self-confidence, self-discipline and respect for others.”
Thursday, 31 July 2014 00:00
Runners and walkers from New Hyde Park are invited to join in the fun on one of the most unusual 5K courses on Long Island at the Saturday, Aug. 9 Sands Point Sprint.
The run presents the Long Island running community with an opportunity to traverse a unique combination of paved paths and runner-friendly woodland trails at the Sands Point Preserve.
The August 2013 edition of the Sands Point Sprint attracted 313 finishers, including top New Hyde Park finishers Michael Ringel, who scored first in the 11-14 age group and Dave Frisone, who earned first place honors in the 65-69 age group. Race organizers are looking for both Ringel and Frisone, and a host of other New Hyde Park runners, to be back next week.