Jr. NBA/Jr. WNBA Skills Challenge Sioux Falls Regional Competition Winners Announced

NEW YORK, April 15, 2009 – The Sioux Falls Champions for the Jr. NBA/ Jr. WNBA Skills Challenge, sponsored by Singulair® (Montelukast Sodium), were recently determined during a dazzling display of skills at the Sioux Falls Arena, during one of 35 regional competitions. The Skills Challenge showcased the top 23 boys and girls in three age brackets from across the area: 9 to 10, 11 to 12, and 13 to 14. All participants from the competition were treated to Skyforce game that evening where the winners received on-court recognition during halftime. First Place Regional Champions will be ranked nationally against the 34 first-place teams from each region, earning them a chance to move on to the National Finals in Orlando, Fla. in May 2009.

Sioux Falls-Area Winners

Lexy Ronning – Sioux Falls, SDCamden Crozier – Sioux Falls, SD
Kristen Longville – Lake Preston, SDLuke Leingang – Bismarck, ND
Katelin Johnson – Sioux Falls, SDMatt Moody – Sioux Falls, SD

The Jr. NBA/Jr. WNBA Skills Challenge, sponsored by Singulair® (Montelukast Sodium) is a free program for boys and girls ages 9 to 14 in which they compete in a time-based, halfcourt obstacle-course competition that demonstrates fundamental basketball skills that help to promote an active lifestyle. This year, the number of Skills Challenge participants doubled to more than 100,000 children throughout the United States and Canada. Levels of competition throughout the year include:

-Local Competitions are being held in 35 markets across the country, with the champion in each age and gender category having the opportunity to advance to their city’s Regional Competition.
-The Regional Competitions are being held through mid-April 2009. Champions will have their scores ranked nationally. The top four scorers in each age and gender group will advance to the National Finals.
-The National Finals will take place in May 2009 in Orlando, Fla.

SINGULAIR is a prescription medicine approved to help control symptoms of asthma in adults and children 12 months and older and for relief of symptoms of indoor and outdoor allergies (outdoor allergies in adults and children as young as 2 years and indoor allergies in adults and children as young as 6 months).

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION: SINGULAIR is not a rescue medication. Always carry a prescribed rescue inhaler for emergencies or sudden symptoms. For asthma, SINGULAIR should be taken once a day, in the evening as prescribed whether or not you have asthma symptoms. If your asthma symptoms get worse or you need to increase the use of your rescue inhaler, call your doctor at once. Side effects are generally mild and vary by age, and may include headache, ear infection, sore throat, and upper respiratory infection. Check with your doctor if you are pregnant or nursing. SINGULAIR is available by prescription only.

About Merck
Merck & Co., Inc. is a global research-driven pharmaceutical company dedicated to putting patients first. Established in 1891, Merck discovers, develops, manufactures and markets vaccines and medicines to address unmet medical needs. The company devotes extensive efforts to increase access to medicines through far-reaching programs that not only donate Merck medicines but help deliver them to the people who need them. Merck also publishes unbiased health information as a not-for-profit service. For more information, visit www.merck.com.

About the Jr. NBA/ Jr. WNBA
In its eighth season, the Jr. NBA/ Jr. WNBA supports grassroots basketball participation, hosts more than 100 events annually and has grown the game of youth basketball through recognition programs such as the Gatorade Championship Series, National Skills Competition, Pledge to a S.T.A.R Summer Camps, Clinic Series, National Team and Coach of the Year. During this time, the program has reached more than eleven million players, parents and coaches globally, providing a support structure that not only encourages participation, but also makes the game fun and rewarding. Young players can create a bond with the game while learning what it takes to be successful away from the court, all at no cost.

Through financial support from Merck, information materials and resources for children and parents will be made available at Jr. NBA/Jr. WNBA Skills Challenge events and online by visiting AthletesAndAsthma.com.