Two Sylvania-area residents have been selected to take part in the Maccabiah Games in Israel in July.
The games are known as the Jewish Olympics and are held in Israel every four years. This year, about 7,000 athletes from 50 countries are expected to compete.
Mark Wexler, of Sylvania Township, an executive with Behavioral Connections of Wood County, will compete as a bowler, and Emily Sack, a graduate of Southview High School and a sophomore at Denison University, in Granville, Ohio, will be a member of the women's fast-pitch softball team.
"I'm amazed that I could be one of six (male bowlers) to represent the United States at these games,'' Mr. Wexler said.
He attempted to qualify eight years ago, but a family situation kept him from being able to compete. When he became aware of the upcoming games he said he made the decision to try again to qualify.
Those seeking a spot on the team were required to send in scores from league games for five consecutive weeks, and those results were used to pick the team.
In the past, bowlers went to a central location and competed for spots, but the selection committee decided that because of time constraints and expense, the decisions would be made from the submitted scores.
Mr. Wexler bowls Tuesdays in the Jim White Toyota League at Ottawa Lanes and has an average of more than 200.
He has been bowling since he was 8 years old and has competed on school and armed services teams.
Making the team for the Maccabiah Games "is really an honor. I'm just amazed by this,'' he said.
He is looking forward not only to the competition, but to the trip to Israel, which he visited once before in 1977.
Mr. Wexler is hoping to take his wife, Barbara, and their children, Bryan, 14, and Andrea, 10.
In addition to keeping in bowling shape, Mr. Wexler's been spending time hoping to raise money to help pay for the trip, but said there was little that would stand in the way of his going.
"This is really the chance of a lifetime,'' he said.
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