Top of the list: Estee Ackerman, an Orthodox Jewish teen from suburban New York City, came up short in her bid to make the U.S. Olympics table tennis team and did not compete in the trials on Shabbat. The 14-year-old lost matches for two consecutive days at the trials last week in Greensboro, NC. The three-day trials finished on Saturday. “I know my decision is the right one because, in life, I will always keep Judaism as my No. 1 priority,” she told Newsday. Ackerman, the 14th seed among the 16 competitors, lost twice to the fifth-seed. The winner on each of the three days of play advances to the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Best of the rest: The Carolina Panthers, under general manager Dave Gettleman, lost Super Bowl 50 to the Denver Broncos, 24-13 on Feb. 7…. Make that eight losses in the last nine games for the Sacramento Kings. They lost to the host Cleveland Cavaliers, 120-100, on Feb. 8. Omri Casspi tied for team-high in scoring with 16 points in 29 minutes off the bench. He also had six rebounds, one assist, and a team-high three steals. The Kings fell 10 games under .500 (21-31)…. Washington Capitals left wing Andre Burakovsky has scored five goals and one assist in his last five games, giving him 10 and 13, respectively, for the season. The Capitals enjoy the best record in the NHL…. Birthday greetings: Eric Nystrom, Nashville Predators (NHL), turns 33 on Feb. 14, the same day legendary broadcaster Mel Allen was born in 1913.
You must remember this: Donna Orender was named president of the WNBA on Feb. 15, 2005.
Statistics through Feb. 8. Sources: JTA, ESPN.com, Day by Day in Jewish Sports History. For the latest news on Jewish Sports, visit Kaplan’s Korner at njjewishnews.com/kaplanskorner.