Charleston, S.C. - Our first Friday Feature comes to us from Toa Baja, Puerto Rico. Junior setter Naiomi Rivera traveled over 1,300 miles to play as a Buccaneer.
"Leaving my family and friends was really hard, but the most difficult transition was with the language barrier," said Rivera. "My first year here I was terrified of speaking English."
Now as a junior, Rivera is comfortable and excited to play this season as a starter. Find out her dream vacation spot and favorite movie here.
Favorite Color: Pink
Most Embarrassing Memory: That's a hard one, because even if it's the smallest thing I get really embarrassed.
Favorite Sport to Watch (besides volleyball): I'm not a huge sports fan, but my goal is to watch more this year. I've been watching soccer a lot though.
Dream Vacation: Hawaii, even though a lot of people say it's really similar to home.
Most surprising song on your playlist: Some country music from home that old people would listen to.
Best Pre-Game Meal: A sandwich
Favorite Ice Cream: Cookies and Cream
Secret Talent: I love to bake.
Favorite Thing to Bake: Cakes
Favorite Movie: White Chicks
Hobbies: Trying new restaurants
Favorite Restaurant in Charleston: Paige's Okra Grill
Favorite Holiday: Christmas. I get to go home, which makes it even more special.
What is your favorite thing about Puerto Rico? Going to the beach and playing beach volleyball.
Nickname: Nai Nai
Two words your teammates would use to describe you on the court: Hard working and loud
Two words you would use to describe yourself off the court: Silly and chill
Biggest Fear: Getting lost and not having a way to communicate
Favorite memory from playing at CSU: One time we traveled for a game and we had an Airbnb and we all got to stay together and cook breakfast and play board games.
Most Prized Possession: My family
Siblings: Older brother
Biggest Cheerleader: My best friend from home and my parents
As a starter, Rivera plans to work hard and remain consistent throughout the season.
"A goal for the team is to be close," commented Rivera. "Just as close outside the gym as we are inside the gym."
Volleyball competes in the Hampton Inn Charleston/West Ashley CofC Invitational this weekend. First serve is set against The Citadel at 4:30 p.m. on Friday.