BUFFALO—Mayor Byron W. Brown and Erie Community College President Jack Quinn called on the community today to help a student athlete raise funds to participate in the 2014 Under-21 World Deaf Basketball Championships this summer. 21-year-old Crystle Marion, one of the top players chosen from across the nation, will represent the United States of America Women's Basketball Team at the competition, scheduled to take place in Samsun, Turkey on July 4-12.
"This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," said Crystle Marion of South Buffalo. "I'm proud to represent Buffalo and the USA."
"Basketball is an increasingly popular sport among elite deaf athletes around the world," said Mayor Brown, who kicked off Crystle's local fundraising drive with a $250 match donation with ECC. "I've known Crystle since her winning days as a top scorer on the basketball court at St. Mary's School for the Deaf. I am confident that she will contribute and play hard to win in Turkey. I thank the generous people of Buffalo, in advance, for rewarding Crystle's years of hard work and dedication on the court by helping her realize this dream to represent the United States in these elite championship games."
"Crystle is a shining example of the best of this college," said ECC President Jack Quinn. "Her accomplishments should be an inspiration for those looking to achieve their goals, and we're honored to call her one of our students. We encourage our Erie County communities to support her efforts as she strives forward."
Crystle Marion graduated from St. Mary's School for the Deaf in 2012. As a member of ECC Women's Basketball team, she is the second leading scorer for the ECC Women's Basketball Team, 1st Team All-Conference, 1st Team All-Tournament, ECC Women's Basketball 2013-2104 Team MVP and award the Ralph Galanti, Sr. Athletic Scholarship Award. A Criminal Justice Major, she will continue her education at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), majoring in Criminal Justice and a member of the Women's Basketball Team. Crystal has been recruited and picked to play for the USA Deaf Olympics Basketball Team. She will be traveling to Samsun, Turkey on June 29, 2014, to compete against other countries.
"Crystal Marion has been a tremendous asset to the ECC Women's Basketball Program," said ECC's women's basketball coach, Natosha Cummings-Price. "A summary of her basketball career and influence on our program inevitably has contributed to changing the level of competition of our program. She is a phenomenal athlete with a unique combination of fundamental soundness, grace, power, strength and an unquenchable competitive desire. Crystal's ability to overcome the loss of loved ones, compete at this level of competition with a disability, and achieve such great honors such as All-Tournament Team, All-Conference, Team MVP and be selected to compete in the USA Deaf Olympics speaks louder than any words imaginable."
At St. Mary's School for the Deaf, Crystle graduated as WNY's leading scorer and the recipient of numerous other honors and awards, including:
- 2012 Deaf National Player of the year (NDIAA & Deaf Digest)
- 2012 Deaf National Championship Team of the Year
- 3-Time ESDAA Champion (2010, 2011, 2012) Channel 7 News Player of the Week (Feb 2012)
- ESDAA 1st Team All-Star
- IAC 1st Team All-Star
- Cheektowaga Senior Classic Selection Buffalo News 2012 (Honorable Mention)
Crystle is seeking financial support in the amount of $3,000 to cover travel and accommodations. An account has been set up at First Niagara Bank in the name of Crystle Marion. Make checks payable to: 2014 U21 World Deaf Basketball Championship. Donations can also be made through a "GoFundMe" account at www.gofundme.com/85wquk.
Since 1946, Erie Community College has met the needs of a diverse student body while contributing to the economic vitality of Western New York. As a member of the state's SUNY system, the three-campus college provides flexible, affordable and accessible educational programs in an accommodating academic environment. Equipped with the knowledge of these programs, ECC's faculty, staff and students strive to enrich their host communities through skill, service and partnership.
Mayor Byron W. Brown and Erie Community College President Jack Quinn called on the community today to help a student athlete raise funds to participate in the 2014 Under-21 World Deaf Basketball Championships this summer.