Middle blocker Kim Se-bin (Han Bom-go), who was considered the highest-ranked female rookie in the professional volleyball draft, has donned a Korea Expressway Corporation uniform.
Kim was the first of 40 players to be selected by Korea Expressway Corporation (KEC) in the 2023-2024 Korea Volleyball Organization (KOVO) Women’s Rookie Draft, held on Tuesday at Mayfield Hotel in Gangseo-gu, Seoul.
The 5-foot-11 Kim was the only high school player to be named to the 50-player preliminary roster for the Hangzhou Asian Games.
She captained Hanbom High School to a sweep of the high school tournament and is considered the next best middle blocker in Korean women’s volleyball after Yang Hyo-jin (Hyundai E&C), who announced her retirement from the national team due to her excellent fundamentals.
The second daughter of KEPCO Chairman Kim Cheol-soo and former national women’s volleyball coach Kim Nam-soon, Kim Se-bin comes from a long line of volleyball players.
The middle blocker played 13 seasons for KEPCO in men’s volleyball, where she also served as the team’s head coach, while her former coach, an outside hitter, played for Korea Hapinsum and KT&G (now KGC Ginseng Corporation) in women’s volleyball.
The order of the draft was determined by a lottery based on the reverse order of last season’s final standings.
Of the 100 balls in the lottery, Pepper Savings Bank had 35, IBK Kookmin Bank 30, GS Caltex 20, KGC Ginseng (to be renamed Red Sparks) 8, Hyundai E&C 4, Heungkuk Life Insurance 2, and Korea Expressway Corporation 1.
Among them, Korea Expressway Corporation received Pepper Savings Bank’s first-round pick in exchange for the second-round pick with Lee Ig-eun, and GS Caltex also sent Lee Won-jung to Heungkuk Life and exercised Heungkuk Life’s first-round pick in return.
Accordingly, Korea Expressway Corporation and GS Caltex each selected two players in the first round.
The Pepper Savings Bank ball was the first to come out of the marble drawer, and as expected, Korea Expressway Corporation, which acquired the Pepper Savings Bank first-round pick in the trade, selected Kim Se-bin.
KGC Ginseng Corporation, the lucky second-round pick with eight marbles, selected Kwak Sun-ok (Ilshin Yeosang), who can play both outside hitter and apogee spiker.
IBK, ranked third overall, selected outside hitter Jeon Soo-min (Geunyoung Girls’ High School), while GS Caltex, which had the fourth and fifth picks in the first round, called out the names of setter Lee Yoon-shin (Jungang Girls’ High School) and libero Yoo Garam (Jecheon Girls’ High School).
Hyundai E&C selected setter Choi Seo-hyun (Hanbom High) with the sixth overall pick, while Korea Expressway Corporation, which held the seventh pick after the first, took outside hitter Shin Eun-ji (Sunmyeong Girls’ High).
Libero Lee Chae-eun (Gwangju Women’s University), who was called up by Pepper Savings Bank as a trainee player, became the first college student in women’s professional volleyball to be selected in the rookie draft.
In addition to Kim Se-bin, the No. 1 overall pick, there are two other players from “volleyball families.
Choi Seo-hyun, selected in the first round by Hyundai E&C, is the daughter of Korean Volleyball Federation referee Ki Nam-i, and setter Seo Chae-hyun (Sunmyeong Girls’ High School), selected in the second round by Heungkuk Life, is the younger sister of Pepper Savings Bank middle blocker Seo Chae-won.
In this year’s draft, 21 players (including six trainee players) were selected out of 40 participants from 15 schools, resulting in an employment rate of 52.5 percent, higher than last year’s (42.9 percent). 스포츠토토