Competitiveness pays off in the end

While growing up as a kid, Nicole Terryn said she had dreams of playing basketball at the collegiate level and excelling in the sport. Little did she know she would end up turning down several basketball scholarships to attend Florida A&M University on a softball scholarship.

Terryn said she started playing sports at the age of six and that she fell in love with basketball. Shortly after enjoying the game of basketball, she started playing softball at the age of twelve and said she started liking the game. Her love for the hardwood would keep interfering with softball and so she started focusing more on basketball.

Terryn, 23, a criminal justice student, said she would continue to play basketball through the high school level where she gained a reputation as being a phenomenal 3-point specialist for A.C. Mosley High School in Panama City.    

“I have the record for the most 3-point field goals made in school history [for women’s basketball],” she said.

Eventually Terryn said she became interested in playing softball. She would go on to make an impact on the defensive and offensive side of the ball for her softball team with her hitting ability.

Terryn said she later went on to play travel ball with some of the best softball players around her area in the summer. This is where she caught the eyes of softball coach, King Jones, at Enterprise-Ozarks Community College in Enterprise, Ala.

After attending several games and watching her game changing performances, Enterprise-Ozarks Community College offered Terryn a full athletic scholarship where she would later sign and play for the next few years.

“I learned a lot playing at community college,” Terryn said. “I learned the game all over again. It was a learning experience.”

While attending Enterprise-Ozarks, Terryn served as a team leader and said she had a strong batting average at the plate. Her hitting ability soon caught the attention of Florida A&M’s head softball coach, Veronica Wiggins. “She’s really one of those die hard players that every coach would love to have and I’m just really fortunate to have her come here and be apart of our softball program,” Wiggins said.

Wiggins said she offered Terryn a full athletic scholarship to come and play softball for the Lady Rattlers. Wiggins said she believes that Terryn’s leadership has lead to the team’s success.

“Nikki is a great competitor and leader on our team and when she leaves this year she will really be missed,” Wiggins said.

In her junior season, Terryn had a .290 batting average, despite missing a lot of action because of several injuries. This year she said she has been healthy and performing well for the Lady Rattlers.

“It’s a lot more competitive here,” she said.

This season Terryn said she is one of the leading hitters for the Lady Rattlers and she has an exceptional .350 batting average.

Lori Goodard, the assistant coach, said she thinks that Terryns’ leadership and presence has really impacted the team this year.

“Nikki is a very hard worker,” she said. “She has really played a big role in our teams unity on and off the field.”

Terryn said she gives a lot of her success and competitiveness to her family. She said that her family is really a big part of her success in softball.    

“My dad and my mom are my biggest fans,” Terryn said. “They rarely ever miss a game and their support has really pushed me to become the student athlete that I am. “

After her senior season and softball career comes to a close, she said she plans on graduating in the summer. In the meantime, fans can be sure to catch Terryn on the softball field.