Aug. 19, 2008
IOWA CITY – Head Coach Sharon Dingman has announced that Mara Hilgenberg has transferred to the University of Iowa from Indiana University. Hilgenberg is a sophomore and will have three years of eligibility for the Hawkeyes.
“We are so excited to have a player of Mara’s caliber join our team,” Dingman said. “She brings a great volleyball IQ and a tremendous work ethic to our gym. Plus the name Hilgenberg is such a great fit for the University of Iowa. “Mara will help us in many ways,” Dingman added. “She has experience as a setter in the Big Ten, she understands the demands on student-athletes and knows the challenges and joys of competing in the Big Ten.”
Hilgenberg, who will be available for action this season, played in all 117 sets for the Hoosiers as freshman in 2007. She led the team with 1,402 assists, which is the sixth highest single-season total in Indiana history. The Lake Forest, IL, native also added 245 digs, 71 blocks, 72 kills and 26 service aces.
Hilgenberg prepped at Lake Forest High School where she was an all-conference selection as a junior and senior. She also served as a team captain for Club Fusion during the 2006-07 season and played for the Sky High Volleyball Club for three seasons. She was named Most Valuable Player for the 17 and under National Division at the Junior Olympic Girls Championships while leading her team to a first place finish.
Hilgenberg’s father, Jay, played football at Iowa from 1977-80 and was a first team all-Big Ten center in 1979. He also had a 13-year career in the NFL, including seven Pro Bowl selections and a Super Bowl win with the Chicago Bears in 1985.