The Niagara University lacrosse program made one of its most significant signings in program history Friday with the addition of Caralyn Renyolds, an 11-year-old girl from Grand Island, through its partnership with Team IMPACT.
"Today is a very exciting day for the Niagara women's lacrosse program; we could not be happier and are incredibly proud to officially welcome Caralyn Renyolds to our Purple Eagles lacrosse family!" head coach Wendy Stone said. "We could not be more thrilled with the addition of this incredibly tough 11-year-old to our roster."
Caralyn, a sixth-grader who attends Veronica Connor Middle School, was diagnosed at age 7 with brain tumors and, after 33 months of chemotherapy, has just recently had her chemo port removed.
Caralyn and the lacrosse program were matched together through Team IMPACT, an organization that helps improve the quality of life for children facing life-threatening and chronic illnesses through the power of team. Children are "drafted" to officially become a member of the team.
"In her short time with us this fall, Caralyn has made an immediate impact on our team," Stone said. "She is a great addition to our team and we know that she will be a great teammate. We will be a better program because of her involvement."
Caralyn's number is 24.
In addition to lacrosse, she enjoys basketball, soccer, baking and crafts.
Team IMPACT is national organization, based in Boston, whose mission is to improve the quality of life for children facing life-threatening and chronic illnesses through the power of team. Team IMPACT children are drafted on to college athletic teams, local to where they live and, in effect, become official members of the team from draft day through to graduation. Established in 2011, Team IMPACT has already matched more than 800 children with collegiate teams at over 300 institutions in 43 states, improving the quality of life of hundreds of courageous children and touching the lives of over 25,000 student athletes.
Renyolds, center, with family, friends and NU officials.