Takia Nichols: Nichols earned her first college weekly honor by the Mid Eastern Athletic Conference this week. She was named the MEAC Freshman of the Week following North Carolina Central’s two-game sweep of Maryland Eastern Shore at Thomas Brooks Park in Cary. On Saturday, the Eagles rallied to win 7-6 with four runs in the bottom of the sixth. Nichols delivered a three-run homer to centerfield to score the game-winning runs with one out. It was her second home run of the game. In the third, Nichols hit a solo homer to right centerfield. In the second game of the doubleheader, Nichols went 1-for-2 as the Eagles defeated the Hawks 9-1 in six innings. It was Central’s first run-rule win of the season. Sunday’s game was halted in the fifth inning with the score tied 3-3. On Wednesday, Appalachian State swept a doubleheader from the Eagles at Parkwood Athletic Field in Durham. In the second game, which the Mountaineers won 7-3, Nichols went 2-for-3. She is already batting cleanup for a Central squad that leads the MEAC with 25 home runs in 27 games. Central is 5-0 in the MEAC.

Ava Lowry: Lowry is regularly starting at shortstop for the Division III North Carolina Wesleyan softball team, which is off to a 15-8 start. On Wednesday, the Battling Bishops swept a doubleheader against Guilford at Howorth Field in Greensboro. In Wesleyan’s 6-1 win in the opener, Lowry went 1-for-3 with an RBI. In the nightcap, which Wesleyan won 9-1, Lowry went 1-for-4 with a double. Pfeifer swept Wesleyan in a doubleheader last Saturday. In the opening game, Lowry went 2-for-3. On March 18, the Batting Bishops swept a doubleheader from Averett by scores of 10-2 and 17-9. In the opener, Lowry went 2-for-3 with a run scored. In the nightcap, she finished 1-for-2 with an RBI. Lowry has played in 24 games and is hitting .318 with two home runs and eleven RBIs. She is fourth on the team with 21 hits. She also has eleven RBIs.

Mary Moss Wirt: Wirt appeared as a pinch-runner for Elon and scored a run in the Phoenix’s 4-3 win over Monmouth on March 19 at Monmouth Softball Park in West Long Branch, NJ. Wirt also played in the Phoenix’s 6-2 victory over Monmouth. Elon is 13-17 overall, 7-2 in the Colonial Athletic Association.

Tori Dalehite: On Wednesday, UNC Greensboro’s softball team defeated Charlotte 4-2 at Daughtridge Stadium in Charlotte. Dalehite appeared as a pinch-runner. On March 19, Dalehite appeared as a designated player in the Spartans 5-3 win over Gardner-Webb. UNC Greensboro has won nine in a row as they head into next week’s midweek game at UNC.

Lauren Jackson: On Wednesday, Jackson faced her former teammate at Orange High as Lenoir-Rhyne faced Catawba. Jackson went 1-for-1 as a pinch-hitter, but Catawba defeated Lenoir-Rhyne 7-5. Jaden Hurdle suited up for Catawba. On March 24, Jackson again appeared as a pinch-hitter and had a base hit as the Bears defeated Coker 7-5 in Saleeby Stokes Field. Jackson has played in 27 games, starting 22 of them. She is hitting .333 with one home run and 15 RBIs.

Olivia Aitkin: The Division III Amherst College softball team started its season March 12. The Mammoths are 13-3. Aitkin started in right field in her first college game and finished 2-for-2 in a 6-2 loss to Bethel University at Fortune Road Complex in Kissimmee, FL. Amherst rebounded to win five in a row. Aitkin went 1-for-3 in a 8-0 win over Kenyon College in five innings. She had an RBI sacrifice fly in a 16-0 victory over the University of New England. Against Carleton College, Aitkin had an RBI single as a pinch-hitter as Amherst won 12-1 in five innings. Aitkin has played in eight games, starting five of them. She is hitting .385 with three RBIs.

Grace Andrews: On Wednesday, the Catawba Valley Community College softball team swept a doubleheader from Cleveland Community College in Shelby. In the nightcap, Andrews went 3-for-5 with three runs scored as the Red Hawks won 15-3 in five innings. Catawba Valley won the opener 8-0. On Monday, Louisburg College, ranked #5 in Division III of the National Junior College Athletic Association, swept a doubleheader from the Red Hawks at Highland Recreation Center in Hickory. In a 11-10 loss to the Hurricanes, Andrews hit a solo homer in the fourth inning. She also drove in a run off a bases-loaded walk. Andrews finished 2-for-3 with two runs scored and two RBIs. Louisburg won the opening game 3-1, where Andrews went 1-for-3. Andrews is the leading hitter for Catawba Valley with a .427 average through 30 games. Catawba Valley is 24-6 overall, 11-3 in Region X of the NJCCA.


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