Sponsors make BOMI 12th Ralik Ratak Shootout happen
Numerous sponsors are supporting the Marshall Islands Basketball Federation with financial and in-kind donations helping to make the BOMI 12th Ralik Ratak Shootout Invitational Tournament happen.
Operating a 16-team tournament over a nearly three-week period takes plenty of volunteer energy and time — and also money. This year’s national tournament — the 12th since the competition was inaugurated in 1999 — is the first to be played on an outdoor court. The ability to use the ECC gym for past BOMI Ralik Ratak Shootouts meant the Federation could charge admission to raise funds that were used to defray tournament costs as well as support ongoing training and competition activities. This year, MIBF is running the tournament outdoors so is more reliant on sponsors to make the Shootout possible.
Among the costs are $3,700 in cash prizes; trophies; meals for volunteers; water for officials, scoreboard personnel and volunteers; fees for referees and scorers; nightly clean up of the CMI area after games finish; and other miscellaneous expenses, including basketballs.
This year’s lineup of sponsors that are making the basketball tournament possible:
• Bank of Marshall Islands: BOMI has been the tournament’s major sponsor since inception, putting up funds that nearly cover the cash prizes. BOMI President Patrick Chen came to the tournament opening on November 30, braving torrential rains to participate in the ceremony.
• College of the Marshall Islands: CMI is providing its court, Student Services staff, equipment and students to assist operation of the tournament.
• National Olympic Committee: The NOC provides financial support that covers many of the costs of putting on this national tournament. MIBF and NOC work closely together in a partnership that is developing basketball in the RMI to a higher level, with NOC assisting coaching and player development, and other basketball activities.
• Ministry of Internal Affairs and V7AB Radio: The Ministry of Internal Affairs has partnered with MIBF since the first tournament in 1999. This year it is providing scoreboard and 24-second shot clock, training for CMI student scoreboard operators, referees, and broadcasting of most games live on V7AB radio.
• Marshall Islands Development Bank: MIDB is a long-time partner of MIBF, consistently supporting a range of basketball activities in the RMI. It is providing a donation that helps MIBF meet its costs of the tournament.
• Matson Navigation Company: Matson has contributed over many years to basketball development in the RMI and this year supported both the RMI teams playing at the Micronesian Basketball Tournament in Guam in September and the Ralik Ratak Shootout. Matson Guam Manager Len Isotoff is also the President of the Micronesia Basketball Association, which represents all the islands in the Micronesia area.
• Pacific Islands Development Bank: PIDB is making its first — and we hope not the last — contribution to MIBF for the tournament. Bank President Aren Palik is a former Kosrae national team player who continues to support basketball development in the region. PIDB’s contribution is helping MIBF meet the costs of running the tourney.
• Do It Best Hardware: DIB’s Tracey Spear and Larry Hernandez provided support to help fund printing by Micronitor’s T-Shirt Shop of the snazzy tournament T-shirt.
• Medi-Source Pacific: Sandy Alfred’s pharmacy and pharmaceutical company has partnered with MIBF in previous Ralik Ratak Shootouts, and this year is providing a cash prize for both men’s and women’s shooting contests during tournament playoffs as well as contributing to MIBF.
• Marshalls Energy Company: When MIBF called MEC General Manager David Paul for help to fix one of the four CMI court lights that had been broken for some years. David immediately dispatched MEC Distribution personnel who spent several days troubleshooting the problem and finding replacement parts. The result: All lights are working for this year’s tournament at the CMI court.
• National Telecommunications Authority: NTA General Manager Tommy Kijiner, Jr. responded to an MIBF request to turn on the phone line (without charge to MIBF) next to the CMI court so that the opening ceremony and basketball games can be broadcast live from the court by V7AB.
• Marshalls Billfish Club: MBC has provided its mobile headquarters building, which it uses for fishing tournaments on the dock, for MIBF to use as its tournament headquarters at CMI.
• Majuro Cooperative High School: Majuro Coop students are assisting tournament organizers as volunteers helping to manage the crowds — particularly the kids — around the courts. This is a particularly important job, since kids like to sit close to the court, putting players and themselves in danger.
Photo: The tournament scoring table at the CMI court on the first day of play, December 4, 2012. Photo: Deborah K. Shoniber.