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You never forget your first

(Statistics through March 7)

Ryan Braun
Ryan Braun

Top of the week: Toronto-born Zach Hyman scored his first NHL goal on March 7, but his home-town Maple Leafs let the game get away to the visiting Buffalo Sabres. Hyman’s net-finder came with 41 seconds left in the second period to give the Leafs a 3-1 lead, but the Sabres scored two in the third for the tie then won the contest in a shootout for the final 4-3 tally.

Best of the rest: Also on March 7, Omri Casspi scored 15 points in a very efficient 18 minutes off the bench as the Sacramento Kings were scooped up by the host New Orleans Pelicans, 115-112. Casspi also had seven rebounds, one assist, and a steal. 

Keep your sunny side up: Among the Jewish Major Leaguers hoping to stick with new teams with good spring training performances are Cody Decker, a gregarious first baseman with the Kansas City Royals, formerly with the San Diego Padres; Ike Davis, first base, Texas Rangers (Oakland Athletics last year); and Harvard graduate Craig Breslow, a reliever with the Miami Marlins, who struck out two of the three batters he faced in his debut (Boston Red Sox in 2015). Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun had yet to appear in a game as he continued to recover from back surgery. Reports say he will be ready for Opening Day. New faces in camp as non-roster invitees: Zach Borenstein, outfielder, Arizona Diamondbacks; Zach Weiss, pitcher, Cincinnati Reds; and Alex Bregman, shortstop, Houston Astros. 

What a kick: Major League Soccer began its regular season on March 6. This year’s batch of Jewish players includes Steve Birnbaum, a defender for DC United; Benny Feilhaber, a midfielder for sporting KC; Andrew Jacobson, a midfielder for NYC FC; and goalie Zac MacMath and midfielder Zach Pfeffer of the Colorado Rapids.

Born this week: Olympic and Maccabiah champion gymnast Mitch Gaylord turns 55 on March 10.

Sources: Jewish Sports Review, MLB.com, ESPN.com, Day by Day in Jewish Sports History.

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