Naming rights sponsor, WCMG CEO, Ronnie Chio and head coach Mick Downer announced the re signing of Ryan Vines today! The deal was done with the support of long time supporter and sponsor Daryn and Vicki Chisholm from Davichi Computer Services. Ryan's story is often used a motivational tool by coaches within the club's senior program. As head coach Mick Downer said at the signing announcement today,
"He is everything that epitomizes what Pirate's basketball is about"
(Go to https://www.facebook.com/SWMPirates/ to watch the announcement!)
Mick was referring to his commitment and persistence. Here is a short version of his story!
Ryan was a prominent South West junior always in the gym at Runcorn High School working at his game but was consistently overlooked for state teams. However, for Ryan it was not the outcome that defined him but the process. He loved the game and enjoyed the process of getting better through those countless hours spent in a gym somewhere usually on the south side of Brisbane. Most stadium managers knew him by name. He became involved in the SBL and QBL programs as a 17yo, in 2008 and toiled away, waiting for his opportunity to shine. That opportunity came after a 4 year apprenticeship in the QBL where he saw limited court time. In 2013, the Pirates lost some key players and the opportunity arose for Ryan to gain some major court time and showcase his skills. Sharing point guard duties with another Pirate legend, Verle Williams, Ryan got to play a more significant role.
He had arrived as a QBL player.
This seemed to feed his hunger for more success with Ryan pursuing an opportunity to play college basketball in the US and then followed that with a move to Spain to give himself an opportunity to develop and play in Europe. He spent time at Cairns and a season with the Townsville Crocodiles before they folded. All the time he would come back to the Ship for the QBL season.
The past season with the Pirates was bitter sweet with the team going undefeated with it's full roster. With Ryan at the helm in the last regular season game, they beat Logan without Jarred Bairstow, Adam Tolo (both at the Olympics) and Brendan Teys (Adelaide 36ers preseason). The rematch in the quarter finals a week later against Logan would see the result go the other way.
The rebirth of the Bullets gave Ryan another goal to pursue. He began training with the squad. Again he made the most of his opportunities and realized one of his childhood dreams of pulling on a Bullets singlet to represent his city! Ryan produced some sparkling performances in the preseason, none more personifying then his entry into the game in the dying seconds on an exhibition match against US college heavyweights UCLA . Shaun Bruce had fouled out with the Bullets down by three points with only seconds on the clock. UCLA planned to foul to send the Bullets to foul line to shoot two shots and secure the ball for the win, however Ryan anticipated this and avoided the early foul attempt. He then threw up a three point shot on the next attempt at a foul which was called. The shot did not miss by much. In that moment Ryan had suddenly given his team an opportunity to win or tie the game! The half court shot did not miss by much and unfortunately the foul shots did not drop.
The partnership with Davichi Computer Services has allowed the Pirates to put together another key piece to the puzzle and the club is working hard to retain the services Brendan Teys and 2016 MVP Tanner McGrew.
Thank you Daryn and Vicki from Davichi Computer Services!