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Abbie Wolf knew she had plenty of basketball left in her after her productive career at Northwestern University concluded in March.

“I know I have the skills to play overseas and I would like to give it a try,” Wolf said back in March.

Wolf, a 2016 Greenwich High School graduate, will indeed, soon have the opportunity to showcase her skills overseas.

The 6-foot-4 Wolf, who graduated from Northwestern this past spring, recently signed a contract to play professional basketball for Club Deportivo Zamarat, which is located in Zamora, Spain.

CD Deportivo Zamarat, also known as Quesos El Pastor for sponsorship reasons, plays in Spain’s Liga Femenia de Baloncesto — the highest level of league competition for women’s basketball in Spain.

Founded in 1964, Liga Femenia de Baloncesto includes 16 teams, with eight squads advancing to the playoffs, after the regular season concludes.

“I am excited, there are about 60,000 people in the town, which supports a women’s and men’s team,” said the 22-year-old Wolf, who is one of the youngest players on CD Zamarat’s roster. “The team plays in the highest division in Spain, so I am really excited for the challenge there. I have been talking to teammates through Zoom and getting to know the coaches.”

Following a senior season in which she averaged 11.3 points per game and a team-leading 6.6 rebounds a contest for Northwestern, Wolf felt primed to take her skills to the next level. She signed with agent Jorge Mendez of PRODEP, who contacted her with an offer to play for CD Zamarat, which is less than 50 miles from Portugal and two hours from Madrid.

“A few weeks after I signed with him, he said, ‘we have an offer for you,’ and I was interested,” Wolf said. “Spain seemed like the right place for me. We’ll be playing against great competition.”

The team officially announced Wolf’s signing in late June, as it formed its roster, which includes 11 players.

The tallest player on the squad, Wolf is projected to play center for CD Zamarat.

“They seem to have a lot of faith in me playing center,” said Wolf, who is one of three American players on the team and the lone rookie. “They like my hook shot and the fact that I keep the ball high. I’m going to focus on doing what I’m good at and keeping it simple.”

A hook shot and effective up-and-under move helped Wolf find her niche as a junior at Northwestern, where she registered a standout senior season. She helped ignite a Wildcats team that posted a record of 26-4, including a 16-2 mark in the Big Ten — a record that gave the team the regular season conference title.

While at Greenwich High School, Wolf played a pivotal role in the program’s resurgence. The Cardinals advanced to the championship game of the CIAC Class LL Tournament at Mohegan Sun her senior season.

Greenwich girls basketball coach Chrys Hernandez was thrilled to hear the news about her former player receiving an opportunity to compete at the professional level.

“Spain is where she hoped she would end up,” said Hernandez, who noted that Wolf is the first player she’s coached that has gone on to play professional basketball. “When she told me I was elated. Knowing the hard work it takes to be on the radar of a professional team, I’m so proud of her.”

Work ethic and teamwork were aspects Hernandez admired while watching Wolf compete.

“What a selfless person she was as a member of our team,” Hernandez recalled. “She always wanted to do her part to see the team achieve its goal. Then I watched from afar as she continued to work, despite the COVID-19 situation and gyms closing. She managed to stay focused and get in the work wherever she could.”

Hernandez is not surprised that Wolf has earned the chance to play overseas.

“I told her she was definitely destined to play at the next level,” Hernandez said. “She had an amazing college career and weathered through some adversity and difficulties along the way, like most college athletes. She persevered through that and she played so well her junior and senior year.”

Alexa Moses, a 2015 Greenwich High graduate, played on the Cardinals with Wolf for three seasons.

“I don’t think there are enough words in the dictionary to describe how happy I am for Abbie,” said Moses, who graduated from Duke University in 2019. “Abbie is an incredible person and it’s awesome to see all the hard work she put in behind the scenes pay off. I’m so happy to see her pursue one of her dreams.”

Moses fondly remembers the successful seasons she shared with Wolf while playing for GHS.

“We were teammates for three years and it was a wonderful three years,” Moses said. “She was the definition of a true teammate and though she was someone who could be a star, she was never a selfish player. Being 6-4, she could have easily demanded the ball all the time.”

During Wolf’s career at Northwestern, Moses made several trips to Illinois to see her former teammate play.

“It was great to see Abbie also carry on a huge legacy at Northwestern,” Moses said. “I enjoyed watching her play so well and with a lot of confidence.”

Luna Kodde, who graduated from Greenwich High in 2014, attended Wolf’s senior game at GHS and Northwestern. The Wolf family included Kodde in Northwestern’s Senior Night ceremony.

“It was very emotional for me,” Kodde said. “Seeing them win the Big 10 championship was so exciting. I also got a little emotional seeing Abbie walk on the court for the last time.”

Showing her school spirit throughout her GHS days, Kodde dressed up as the Cardinal mascot at the team’s Class LL championship game against Stamford at Mohegan Sun in 2016.

“I can’t wait to see her playing in more games,” Kodde said. “I know she wanted to be a professional basketball player, so I am very happy for her. My family is from Holland and it is close to Spain, so I hope to see Abbie play over there.”

Anne Wolf, Abbie’s mother, saw up close, how Wolf centers her attention on everything she does. Anne Wolf owns a condominium in Cabo, Mexico, so Abbie lived with her during the COVID-19 pandemic from March 15 until June 2.

“Abbie found ways to work out in Mexico, she practiced her shooting,” said Anne Wolf, who also resides in Norwalk. “She was up every morning, writing, studying and doing homework. She would be busy non-stop.”

Northwestern won the Big 10 title with a 75-58 home win over Illinois on Senior Day (Feb. 29) and Wolf scored a team-high 21 points with her mother in attendance.

“I went to so many games this year, herseason was so exciting,” Anne Wolf said. “Being at that Big 10 game was the most exciting ever. The energy, with what was happening was incredible and Abbie had a big game that day. It was such a great day and her brothers (Alex, Andrew) were there too.”

“I am so happy that Abbie will have the chance to live her dream and play professionally abroad. Her hard work and dedication has paid off.”

Wolf is currently in Florida, visiting her father August, a former United States indoor and outdoor national shot put champion and Olympian.

She is in training and awaiting word as to when she can travel to Spain. CD Zamarat’s season is supposed to start in the fall, but the schedule has yet to be released due to the COVID-19 crisis. Yet Wolf will be ready when called.

“I went to South Africa for 10 weeks my junior year of college, I love experiencing other cultures,” she said. “I’m really excited to do that in Spain and see where life takes me. I hope to play a few years in Europe.”

Wolf received an outpouring of congratulatory words after she announced her signing with CD Zamarat.

“So many coaches and teammates reached out to me,” Wolf said. “Morgan Rafferty, my former volleyball teammate at Greenwich, said ‘congratulations to the hardest worker I ever played with.’ I received a lot of comments like that that meant so much to me. I am proud to represent New England basketball at the professional level and I understand the significance in representing my family.”

dfierro@greenwichtime.com