Since they were little girls, Tammy Hamilton would always sing the song “I Hope You Dance” by Lee Ann Womack to her daughters Janae and Marissa.  In a nutshell, the song is about perseverance and taking risks as you move through life.  The signature lines of the song say it perfectly:  And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance.  The end result… Janae is currently a member of the 24 and 5 Alfred State College Volleyball team that will be playing in the USCAA National Championship Tournament this weekend in Virginia Beach.

And, today, November 9, 2016, Marissa signed her national letter of intent to play Division 1 basketball at the University of Buffalo on a full scholarship!

Marissa has worked very hard to get to this point in her sports career.  She is a three season standout athlete at Ellicottville Central School.  She played on the 2012 ECS Volleyball team that claimed the NYS Class D Championship and over the past three years has served as a team captain.  In the spring she has been a member of the track and softball teams.

And, as good as her accomplishments have been in these arenas, basketball has always been her first love and where she truly shines as an athlete.  Marissa has yet to play her senior year, but her statistics are already very impressive:

Big 30 First Team All-Star 2014, 2015, ECS Team MVP 2014, 2015, CCAA East league MVP 2014, 2015, CCAA East League 1st Team All-Star 2014, 2015, Olean Times Herald Big 30 All-Star 2014, 2015, Big 30 Highest Point Percentage per game 2014, 2015, 1000 points Honor in her Junior Year, Scholar Athlete 2014, 2015, Western New York Honorable Mention All-Star

As Marissa prepares for her Senior Year, she is looking to duplicate the success she experienced during her Junior Year.  In one game during the 2015-16 campaign, Marissa scored 8 three point shots on her way to a game high 38 points!  She will be a captain on the team and her goal is to help lead her team to a league title.  When asked how she feels about becoming a Bull at the University of Buffalo, Marissa replies: I’m excited and grateful that I have this opportunity!”  Marissa would also like to thank her family and all the coaches that have worked with her at ECS.  She would also like to thank Brian McFadden and the Ellicottville Chamber of Commerce for sponsoring her in the Full Court Hoops Nationals Team; where she played throughout the northeast (Washington DC, Chicago, Indiana) over this past summer.

Chad Bartoszek, Marissa’s basketball coach at ECS said it has been a pleasure to work with her in basketball over the past four years.  “She has put a tremendous amount of work into reaching her goals as a basketball player, and she should be proud of her achievements.”  Marissa’s mom is especially proud of her perseverance and hard work in getting to this point in her career.  In fact, the entire ECS Family is proud of Marissa and we look forward to watching her play on the ECS Court this year… and “dance” on the UB Court next year.

Congratulations Marissa!