Former Penn State Nittany Lion Wilma Rivera will transfer to Louisville next season, new Louisville head coach Dani Busboom Kelly announced via Twitter this afternoon.
“Excited to announce Wilma Rivera, a transfer from Penn State and former Puerto Rico Jr. National Team member will join us this fall,” Busboom Kelly Tweeted.
Rivera, a setter, will have two seasons of eligibility remaining after playing 2 years at Penn State. As a freshman, she played in 21 games and had 2 starts, recording 27 assists (.51/set) and 6 aces. As a sophomore, she saw her playing time reduced, appearing in just 10 games with 1 start and having just 2 assists and 4 aces.
While primarily a setter, her biggest contributions have actually been as more of a defensive specialist. She had 82 digs as a freshman (1.55/set) and 16 as a sophomore.
With Penn State junior setter Abby Detering returning next season, and 4 underclassmen setters on the roster last year, it was unlikely that Rivera would get any more playing time. Louisville, meanwhile, has just one setter on its preliminary 2017 roster, with no scholarship freshmen setter announced.
Rivera then will be left to compete with redshirt-junior Kali Eaken, who led the team with 773 assists (8.69/set) last season. That ranked her 8th last season in a conference of 15 teams.
Originally from Carolina, Puerto Rico, Rivera was a four-year team captain of her high school team the Saint Francis School. In 2013, she was named the Best Setter at Copa Pan American U18 as part of Puerto Rico’s silver-medal winning team.
Louisville finished 12-18 last season and 7-13 in the ACC, after which Anne Kordes resigned. The year was an anomaly in her tenure, after 4 conference titles in 6 seasons leading the Cardinals. Louisville then hired Busboom Kelly, who was a former assistant coach at Nebraska.