A roundup of all the local high school sports and athletics happenings from April 6, 2017:
Nickal wins ‘The Hammer Award’
Penn State sophomore Bo Nickal has won The Hammer Award, presented annually by Amateur Wrestling News to the wrestler who wins the national title in the most competitive weight class.
Nickal earned the 184-pound title at the NCAA championships, beating No. 1 seed and two-time defending NCAA champ Gabe Dean of Cornell, 4-3. Nickal’s title capped Penn State’s perfect 5-for-5 run in the national finals on March 18.
The two-time All-American added the award to an already impressive resume. Nickal was named the Gorriaran Award recipient for the most falls in the least amount of time at the NCAA championships, and he took home a pair of Big Ten Wrestler of the Week honors this season, as well.
Rivera transfers to Louisville
LOUISVILLE, K.Y. Penn State setter Wilma Rivera transferred to Louisville, the Cardinals announced Thursday.
Rivera, also a member of the Puerto Rican National Team, spent two seasons in Happy Valley. Her role was more significant as a freshman, when she appeared in 50 sets and totaled 78 digs, 27 assists and six aces. In 2016, she had only 16 digs, four aces and two assists in 19 sets.
Most notably, Rivera saw time in Penn State’s 2015 run to the NCAA regional semifinals against Hawaii, recording four digs against the Rainbow Wahine.
“Her athleticism is impressive and it is obvious that she is a leader,” Louisville coach Dani Busboom Kelly said in a statement. “Wilma will be a great addition to the 2017 team, and we can’t wait to get her on campus.”