Rivera Joins Wolfpack Softball Coaching Staff
RALEIGH, N.C. - NC State softball head coach Lisa Navas has announced the addition of Amanda Rivera to the Wolfpack coaching staff. A former standout at the University of Illinois-Chicago, Rivera comes to State after a two-year stint as a volunteer assistant coach at Northwestern. During both of her years in Evanston, the Wildcats reached the Women's College World Series. Prior to that she served as a volunteer coach for her alma mater in 2005.
"I am very excited about this opportunity," said Rivera. "NC State is already a very successful program and I want to help build upon its solid reputation."
"We have all of the tools in place to continue to win and improve."
At NC State, Rivera will work with the outfielders and assist coach Navas with the hitters.
"I am excited to have someone on our staff with Women's College World Series experience," said Navas. "Amanda will bring a renewed excitement to the next stage of the program."
The Wildcats offense exploded during Rivera's two years working with the hitting corps, setting program records for hits and doubles. Rivera also helped steer several players to personal accolades, as Garland Cooper won Big Ten Player of the Year honors and Tammy Williams was picked as Freshman of the Year following tremendous seasons at the plate in 2006. Both were named NFCA All-Americans.
At the 2006 WCWS, Rivera's influence on Northwestern's bats was put on display for the entire softball community, as Katie Logan led the field with eight hits, while the Wildcats crushed six home runs in its first three games, a WCWS record.
In 2007 the Wildcats continued their assault in the batter's box under Rivera's leadership. Cooper set Big Ten single-season (23) and career (55) home run records and Northwestern shattered its team mark with 85, besting the old record by 29. Cooper and Williams both earned NFCA All-America accolades again, while Cooper picked up an unprecedented third Big Ten Player of the Year award. Rivera also helped coach Nicole Pauly to 14 home runs and 62 RBIs, earning her the Wildcats' third conference Rookie of the Year award over a span of four seasons.
In addition to her collegiate experience, Rivera is a seasoned prep coach. She served as the head coach of the Oak Park Windmills under-18 and under-12 squads in 2004-05. She was an instructor at the Northwestern softball summer camp in 2005-07 and also has instructed at various summer camps. In the summer of 2007, Rivera worked with NC State head coach Lisa Navas and pitching coach Leigh Ann Ellis at the Wolfpack Softball camps.
A four-time All-Horizon League and All-Great Lakes Region honoree, Rivera put the exclamation point on her illustrious collegiate career in 2004 by picking up Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-America honors. As a player she was a part of three league championships teams, all of which made the NCAA field.
She batted .371 with a UIC single-season-record 20 home runs while driving in 58 runs as a senior, earning her Horizon League Player of the Year accolades.
Rivera ranks first in the UIC career record book for home runs with 52 while ranking in the top 10 all-time for average (.338), hits (227), RBIs (193) and walks (125). She stands at 23rd in NCAA history for career home runs.
A native of Redondo Beach, Calif., Rivera graduated from UIC in 2005 with a B.S. in movement science. She resides in Raleigh, N.C.