Julia Weiss, an incoming junior at Oak Park River Forest High School, is returning home with a gold medal after spending three weeks in Israel as part of the USA Junior Soccer Team competing in the The Maccabiah Games, which are the third largest international sporting event in the world, after the Summer Olympics and the Pan Am Games.
The Junior Soccer Team, comprised of 20 players from throughout the United States who won coveted spots on the team, defeated Israel 1-0 on Sunday July 27 to win the Gold Medal. During the regular games USA defeated Sweden, Australia, South Africa, Brazil, Canada and Israel with USA Team shutting out each team. The Maccabiah Games include dramatic and exciting opening and closing ceremonies in Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem.
Junior players from all over the world and representing dozens of sports lived together on a kibbutz during the duration of the games.There were over 8,500 participants from 70 countries participating in junior, open and Master's level sports that included ice hockey, field hockey,equestrian, volleyball, basketball, tennis, softball and many other sports.