An Island sports tradition returns: Theinert 3 on 3 tournament wows fans

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO Will Smiley going strong to he hoop in the annual Thienert 3 on 3 tournament last weekend at the school gym.

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO
Will Smiley going strong to he hoop in the annual Thienert 3 on 3 tournament last weekend at the school gym.

Once again, this year’s “3 on 3” basketball tournament was a huge success, helping support the nonprofit Joseph J. Theinert Memorial Fund.

This event is just one of several that are hosted throughout the year to fund the Strongpoint Theinert Ranch, which helps veterans and Gold Star families.

The 3 on 3 tournament has become an Island Thanksgiving weekend tradition throughout its eight-year history. A true community event involving everyone, the teams must include a high school student and a female player.

Most of the same teams and players come back every year to play games that are highly competitive and action-packed. In the 2017 edition last weekend, the sportsmanship was excellent, and the 200-plus spectators enjoyed the effort and determination displayed on the court.

In the finals, “The Fam” team beat the “Forever Young” squad — who were last year’s tournament champions — with a last second shot at the buzzer.

The mission of Strongpoint Theinert Ranch is to strengthen guests physically and mentally, helping them in their transition back to society. Guests participate in activities designed to work on dealing with stress and other issues, utilizing nature as a means to heal them.

The cost to host one guest is approximately $500-to-$600 and helps pay for airfare, meals, equipment and other needs. Dozens of veterans, as well as Gold Star families, have benefitted from their experiences at the ranch.

Located in a remote area in New Mexico on approximately 1,000 acres, the nonprofit’s current goal is to raise $300,000 to build a bunk house that can host an additional 20 guests.

A special thanks goes out to Jimmi Rando, Jon Kilb, Sharon Power and Joe Miranda for their generous donations and prizes. The Theinert and Kestler families also want to thank the Kanarvogel and Mundy families, the referees Jim Colligan and Ken Kraus, Carla Cadzin and the other volunteers who helped make this event such a huge success.

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO Winners of the Thienert 3 on 3 tournament is The Fam team. From left, Chrys Kestler, Nicolette Frasco, Erik Thilberg, Will Smiley, Lee Knoeppel, Christian Napolitano, Joseph Napolitano (team captain), and Jimbo Theinert.

BEVERLEA WALZ PHOTO
Winners of the Thienert 3 on 3 tournament is The Fam team. From left, Chrys Kestler, Nicolette Frasco, Erik Thilberg, Will Smiley, Lee Knoeppel, Christian Napolitano, Joseph Napolitano (team captain), and Jimbo Theinert.

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