Polk County's Wil Rimer, center seated, is flanked at Thursday's ceremony by his parents, Rhonda and Keith Rimer. Back row, from left, athletic director Brandon Schweitzer, assistant soccer coach Will Pack, Evan Rimer, head soccer coach Lennox Charles and principal Mary Feagan.

Wil Rimer isn’t worried about the knee surgery he’ll undergo next week.

The Polk County senior is feeling too thankful these days to be concerned.

Rimer is bound for Emory & Henry College to play soccer, having accepted an invitation to join the Wasps program. Polk County’s athletic deparment held a ceremony Thursday in the school library at which Rimer inked the non-binding celebratory signing form that the NCAA allows Division III-bound athletes to sign.

Smiling the whole time, too.

“It’s a dream come true,” Rimer said after the ceremony. “I’m blessed to go to the college I’ve wanted to go to for the past two years. I’m blessed I get to play college soccer. I’m blessed I get to go the same college as Ashley (Love), who I’ve gotten really close to the past two years.

“I’m excited. I’m really looking forward to the fall and being able to go to Emory & Henry and start my new life.”

Rimer’s pending ACL surgery will prevent him from playing this fall, but once he is able to play, Polk County head coach Lennox Charles thinks Rimer will be able to contribute to the program.

“I think his games translates well,” Charles said. “The first thing at that level is that you can be a good player, but if you’re not athletic, you’re going to struggle. He’s not going to have any problem with that. Everybody is athletic at that level, but he’ll fit it.

“If he just attacks his rehab with the same mindset as he does when he’s playing and do the work he’s going to put in, he’ll be fine.”

Charles remembered a late-season conversation with Rimer’s father, Keith, near the end of Rimer’s freshman year. To that point, Rimer had never played soccer outside of a school season. Charles helped Rimer find a travel club in Rutherford County.

“In his sophomore, junior and senior seasons, he played soccer year-round. He put the work in to improve,” Charles said. “That kind of work ethic, that kind of determination is what helped him be conference player of the year.”

Rimer scored 40 goals this season in helping lead Polk County to the Western Highlands Conference regular-season title. He was named the WHC player of the year, an All-Area selection and a second-team All-Western North Carolina pick. He also earned all-district honors from the N.C. Soccer Coaches Association.

Rimer also considered Gardner-Webb and Montreat College, but fell in love with the Emory & Henry campus during his initial visit there.

“I toured all of the schools,” Rimer said. “In the first 10 minutes I was at Emory & Henry, once I got there I said, this is it, this is my home for the next four years. And that’s where I’m going.”