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Arizona volleyball transfer merry-go-round gets started

Former Arizona libero Kamaile Hiapo (8) reportedly has a new volleyball home.
Photo by Catherine Regan / Arizona Athletics

The transfer merry-go-round that is the college offseason is fully underway for Arizona volleyball. Players both leaving and coming into the program have begun making their announcements.

The commitments started over the weekend when former Wildcat libero Kamaile Hiapo was reported to be on her way to BYU for her NCAA-granted fifth year due to the pandemic.

Hiapo has ties to the Cougars. Her older brother played for their men’s team and her commitment to her LDS faith is well-known. Coming out of high school, Arizona head coach Dave Rubio said that he originally thought she would go to BYU. He credited offering her a four-year scholarship, which isn’t common for her position, with getting her to Tucson.

There’s also news of an incoming Wildcat. Kasen Rosenthal, a 6-foot setter who played at Connecticut as a freshman last season, announced her commitment to Arizona on Instagram.

Rosenthal is from Austin, Tex. where she played for Austin High School and Roots Volleyball. In her three-year career at AHS, she was responsible for 3.1 assists per set with her best season being as a junior when she had 6.2 a/s. She also accounted for 2.2 kills, 1.9 digs, 0.3 blocks, and 0.3 aces per set over her high school career.

In her single year at UConn, Rosenthal appeared in 18 sets over 12 matches as a freshman. Her best match came against Butler when she played four sets and had a double-double with 32 assists and 15 digs. She also had a kill, an ace, and one total block that day for 2.5 points.

Her 61 assists over the course of the year worked out to 3.39 a/s. She also had 1.33 d/s and 0.11 b/s.

Emery Herman, who started at setter for the Wildcats the last three years, is reportedly in the portal. Arizona still has two setters on the roster, current freshman Ana Heath and current sophomore Ava Tortorello. Heath saw the most playing time of the pair this year, becoming a regular part of UA’s serve rotation and getting some time at setter and one match at opposite.