Bryn Mawr – Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy seniors Elliott Bernstein and Lindsay Chevlin arrived at the Bryn Mawr campus taking different paths but they came for the same reason – the close-knit family environment.
“It was either coming to Barrack or going to school in New York,” said Chevlin, who previously attended Abrams Hebrew Academy in Yardley and travels from Princeton Junction, N.J. “However my brother Ben went here and the way the Barrack community embraced my family was special to me. When I came here to visit they embraced me the same way. Barrack also had a competitive athletics program and I wanted to be part of that.”
Bernstein, who attended Pearlman Jewish Day School prior to deciding on Barrack in sixth grade, added, “I looked at Radnor Middle School in fifth grade but the tightness and community that is developed at Pearlman was hard to give up. Everyone knew everyone, it was a comfortable atmosphere and it has kind of been like a home. It would have felt wrong to leave.”
On Feb. 6, Barrack honored Bernstein, Chevlin and the other seniors from the boys and girls teams in front of a packed house during their traditional Saturday night doubleheader against Kohelet Yeshiva High School in a battle of the two area Jewish Day Schools.
The girls opened the night with a convincing 54-24 win before the boys took center stage and completed the evening sweep with a 47-26 victory.
“I remember playing point guard in this game when I was in ninth grade and feeling overwhelmed because there were so many fans and the noise level made it hard to concentrate,” said Bernstein, who helped lead the Cougars to three playoff appearances. “This game has certainly become a rivalry during my career and I have gotten used to the noise each year and I feel I have grown into my role as a team leader and it was nice to get a win.”
Chevlin, who helped lead the girls team to the Tri-County Championship twice during her career, added, “Playing at Barrack has been amazing. Watching everyone develop has been great and the relationships we had with our coaches was very special. Coach Rebecca (Tratjenberg) was amazing. She helped us develop as players and teammates on the court. She was like our team mom. Coach Chris, who took over this year when Rebecca stepped down, was great. He taught us a new perspective and really helped us enhance what we learned through my career.”
While the year ended for both the boys and girls teams with losses in the Tri-County semifinals, those games do not define the career and impact Chevlin and Bernstein left on the school and the basketball programs.
“In addition to their athletic abilities, both Elliot and Lindsay were successful here at Barrack because they have tremendous character,” said Barrack Hebrew Athletic Director Justin Cooper. “They were consummate team players and always represented themselves, Barrack and their families in a positive light. Barrack Basketball has made enormous strides because of their significant contributions and leadership.”