First year player Nikki Cox breaks records on the softball field

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Sophia Ehlers

SOPHIA EHLERS (’17)

Nikki Cox is known around the school and Ohio as one of the best soccer players to ever come through high school, and rightfully so. Through Nikki’s four years of high school she has been a two-time all American, three-time MVP, four-time all Ohio and has been a captain since her junior year. All of Cox’s soccer accomplishments seem to mask her other achievements and that’s why many do not know that Cox played softball at a very elite level until age fourteen and returned to the sport for her senior year, breaking records.

Clint and Tammy Cox have raised all three of their kids in a very athletic environment, they’ve owned an athletic complex called TADD sports since, 2005. “They are a very athletic family, I know both of her parents played sports in high school and at the college level. Nikki and Katie (Nikki’s freshmen sister) were bound to be super athletic,” Nikki’s soccer and softball team mate Rose Sawyers said.

By age eleven Nikki was playing soccer and softball for some of the top teams in the country. When Nikki realized she wanted to play soccer in college, she knew she had to be fully committed to her soccer team. So at age fourteen Cox gave up softball and focused on her soccer career.

“Though she had to give up a sport she loved, she was also more passionate than ever to earn a Division I scholarship for soccer” her mother Tammy Cox said, and she did.

Nikki verbally committed to The University of North Carolina Wilmington her junior year of high school and signed this past fall. Cox has continued in her soccer career through high school, appearing in the state final four three years in a row and receiving runner up in the state finals for her senior season this past fall, but she never won gold.

Cox reached a cross roads this spring: her high school athletic career was over and the right thing for her future would be to play for a travel soccer team this spring. But she didn’t want her high school athletic career to end just yet, especially without a state championship medal around her neck. So Cox figured out a way to play both.

Though Cox’s travel soccer schedule with Ohio Primer will be packed every week with games and practices, Cox decided to go out for the softball team this spring, and she has never been more excited to play. “She’s an asset. I would take Nikki 70% any day if the alternative was not at all,” softball coach Rae Stuart said.

“I knew it would be a challenge to play spring softball along with travel soccer and it is, but I love softball and I thought it was time to go back to the sport I enjoy so much,” Cox said.

“Nikki hasn’t played in years,” Sawyers said “but sure enough you couldn’t tell one single bit.”

For Nikki’s first and final year in softball she has broken records for stolen bases and her batting average of .649 is one of the best in the state.

“She’s exceeded all my expectations I had for her coming in. She’s one of the most athletic girls I’ve ever had the pleasure to coach,” Stuart said. Nikki has done better, stat wise, for her one short season in high school softball then many do in four years of playing.

“Nikki won first team all LCL and is sure enough to win more awards at the district and state level” Stuart said.

Though Cox hasn’t won the medal she’s striving for quite yet Nikki and the rest of the softball team will be playing for the district title on Monday May 23. The team will continue to play into the beginning of June if they keep winning and it will take five more wins to earn the state championship title once again for the softball team. Nikki will go down as one of the best soccer players ever to come through the high school, but for those who saw her on the softball field they will honor her just the same.