Springfield College Men’s Basketball players welcome 6-year-old teammate

Hampden County

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Springfield College Men’s Basketball team welcomed a new teammate to the court Wednesday night.

Six-year-old Jondel Rivera Ruiz signed a letter of intent Wednesday night. He suffers from Cystic Fibrosis and through Team Impact he is able to live the dream of becoming a college basketball player.

Within minutes of being a member of the team, Jondel was already a star.

Springfield College men’s basketball team helps Center for Human Development

“He’s excited,” Jondel’s mother, Cassandra Smith, told 22News. “He goes through a lot medically, so this is something for him to look forward to, a lot of role models too.”

“Jondel’s not able to do things all the time, but we are here for him when he can and this happens to be a day when he certainly could, so we’re going to get him to come to some of the games and practices whenever he can,” Springfield College Men’s Basketball Coach Charlie Brock told 22News. “He’s welcome anytime.”

Team Impact helps connect children with chronic illnesses with the support of college sports teams.

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