Cleveland State went a long way towards finalizing its 2022-23 roster on Monday by confirming the arrival of Carmen Villalobos from Hartford, while also announcing the addition of former South Florida guard Sara Guerreiro.
Unlike Villalobos, who received heavy usage at UHart, Guerreiro – the Seixal, Portugal native has three years of eligibility remaining – comes to Cleveland as something of an unknown after playing just over 200 minutes across a pair of seasons at USF. Last year, in 6.1 minutes per game across 27 contests, she averaged 1.1 points and 0.8 rebounds.
It’s worth noting that Jose Fernandez’s Bulls team was 24-9, including non-conference wins over the likes of Stanford and Oregon, and advanced to the NCAA Tournament as a no. 9 seed. USF was an elite defensive team, ranking tenth in the nation in points against per game (54.5) and first in points against per possession (0.863). All of that followed a 2020-21 season that featured a 19-4 record, an AAC championship, and a win over Washington State in the first round of March Madness. So it says something that Guerreiro was both recruited into that program and able to get on the floor a little bit as essentially an every-game player last year.
“We are ecstatic that Sara will be joining our program next year! She is coming from a top-25 team and she knows what it takes to win,” Vikings head coach Chris Kielsmeier said, via press release. “Sara is a versatile combo guard who is efficient on the court and excellent in the classroom. Sara definitely has the desire and passion that it takes to help us chase championships, and we can’t wait to get started.”
When given a bit more of an opportunity that she received at USF, Guerreiro presents as an athletic backcourt player capable of playing point but probably a more natural fit off the ball, while defending well from either spot. Prior to starting college, with her Portuguese club team Quinta Dos Lombos, she averaged 3.9 rebounds per game along with 5.9 points – the latter number coming on impressive shooting numbers like 52.7 percent from the floor and 83.3 percent from the line.
She was also successful when selected to the Portugal U18 and U20 teams, firing home 8.0 points per game with the older group during the summer of 2019.
“Cleveland State is a place where there’s a valuable work ethic and great competition,” Guerreiro said in the CSU release. “I want to help the Vikings win a championship and be part of a team that makes history for the program.”
The Vikings’ new Iberian Peninsula delegation leaves CSU with a projected two spots remaining. However those ultimately end up being used, it’s clear the Kielsmeier will once again roll an extremely athletic roster in 2022-23, one also with a bit more depth than last season.