Lenaria Ruffin and Marla Crawford of River Mill, both signed National Letters of Intent this past weekend. Ruffin signed with Elon University, while Crawford signed with Pheiffer University.
5’ 8” Ruffin who is an outside-inside threat averaged 17.6 points, 14.3 rebounds, 4.2 steals. and 3.8 assists per game last season, while 5’ 3” Crawford is a versatile point guard who averaged 14.1 points, 6.8 assists, 5.1 steals, and 4.1 rebounds per contest last year. The dynamic duo has led the Lady Jaguars to three consecutive trips to the NCHSAA State Regional Tournament. Ruffin, was a NCPreps 1-A All-State Selection and the Carolina
Twelve 2-A/1-A Conference Player of the Year last season. She is a 3-time NCBCA 1st Team All-District Team Selection, a 3-time selection to the Boo Williams Christmas Classic All-Tournament Team, and a 3-time member of the Times-News All-Region Team. She holds the School Record for All-Time Career Rebounds with 1319, and her 1369 points is just two points shy of eclipsing the River Mill all-time career scoring mark.
Crawford, accolades include being a 3-time NCBCA All-District Team selection, and 3-time selection to the Carolina Twelve 2-A/1-A All-Conference Team. Marla was also selected to the Boo Williams Christmas Classic All-Tournament team two times, and she was a 2012 member of the Times-News All-Region Team. She is the River Mill Single Game school record holder in assists (15) vs Cedar Ridge), and in steals (17) vs South Granville. River Mill has compiled a 93-11 record, during their three varsity seasons.
Lenaira Ruffin said, “I chose Elon, because of Coach (Charlotte) Smith. When I visited Carolina (UNC) during my sophomore year, she was the member of their coaching staff who showed me around the campus! We connected really well, and now she’s at Elon. I guess everything happens for a reason!” Ruffin added, “I also chose Elon because it’s right here in Burlington, and now all of my family members can come to all of the games!”
Marla Crawford stated, “I made up my mind to choose Pheiffer when I went back for their Elite Camp in September. I already liked the coaches, then I found out that I liked playing with their players on the court. That sealed the deal for me!”
River Mill coach Hamilton Perkins said. “They’ve been at River Mill since kindergarten, and they’ve grown to become fantastic young ladies! Both of them told me about their basketball dreams when they were in elementary school, and I’m so happy that their dreams will turn into realities!”
Lenaira is the daughter of Leonard and Cynthia Ruffin, while Marla is the daughter of Mark and Shelia Crawford.