March 27, 2012

Wheelchair Football Game Brings Joy and Smiles to Owens Express and Toledo Crash Athletes

PERRYSBURG TOWNSHIP, Ohio – The rare sight of touchdowns, kickoffs and tackles recently took center stage in Owens Community College’s Student Health and Activities Center as Express student-athletes traded their talents in volleyball, soccer, basketball, baseball, softball and golf for the pigskin in a wheelchair football game against the Ability Center of Greater Toledo’s Toledo Crash. The visiting Toledo Crash ended up victorious 56-42 in a high-scoring contest between the two teams.

“First and foremost, I want to thank Owens Community College Athletics Director Rudy Yovich and the student-athletes for this opportunity,” said Jim Etzel, Toledo Crash Coach who also serves as an Ability Center of Greater Toledo Inclusion Specialist. “Events such as this football game against Owens show that people with disabilities are competitive and want to compete. We want to make society aware that people with disabilities have the same dreams and goals. What an exciting day. Our team had a lot fun.”

The Toledo Crash’s roster features residents from around the region, including Owens students Carrie Benore of Monroe, Mich. and Chris Clarke of Toledo.

The Ability Center of Greater Toledo is a Center for Independent Living serving Northwest Ohio. The organization was founded with the overall mission of assisting people with disabilities to live, work and socialize within a fully accessible community. Five core services provided by the Ability Center of Greater Toledo are information and referral, advocacy, independent living skills training, peer support and community living.

Owens Community College is an accredited two-year, state-assisted institution of higher education that has served Northwest Ohio since 1965. With a commitment to providing small classes, personal attention and unmatched affordability, the College serves the diverse academic needs of credit and non-credit students on the Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses, as well as at the Arrowhead Park Learning Center in Maumee and the Learning Center at The Source in downtown Toledo. Owens offers associate degrees that transfer to baccalaureate degrees in the Arts and Sciences and over 130 technical program areas in Agriculture, Business, Health Sciences, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Skilled Trades, and Engineering and Transportation Technologies. Owens students also can earn the first two years of a bachelor’s degree with a smooth transfer to any area four-year college or university. For more information, visit

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