Daniel signs with Meredith softball
Southern Nash's Alexa Daniel recently signed to play softball at Meredith College.
Playing college softball has long been a dream for Alexa Daniel, a three-year player for Southern Nash’s varsity team. That dream has now been realized, as Daniel signed with Meredith College to continue her softball career.
Daniel also spoke with and explored North Carolina Wesleyan University and Queens University, but, due to the ability to stay close to home and the connection she felt with Meredith head coach Kim Scavone, becoming an Avenging Angel was an easy choice for her.
“I went to visit, I walked the campus, I saw some of the girls and loved it,” Daniel said. “The coach was amazing. So that was honestly why it ended up being my first choice. The coach was probably my favorite. She was so great. She’s so happy. They’re all so welcoming. The girls were great. So that’s honestly why I went straight to Meredith.”
Daniel pitched and played the infield for Southern Nash, but she said that she’s likely just going to pitch for Meredith. She’ll head to Meredith in January, so her career as a Firebird has already come to an end.
And it was a spectacular career. Daniel compiled a .372 batting average, 32 hits and scored 25 runs in her high school career. In the circle, she has not lost a start.
Daniel started out as a left fielder her freshman year, but had the start of her high school career delayed as she missed three weeks with a concussion. Then, in her sophomore year, Southern Nash played just four games before the spring season was wiped out due to the pandemic.
Daniel enjoyed a truly special junior year in the spring of 2021, batting .436, and, in the circle, going 5-0 with four complete games, three shutouts and a no-hitter. She was a clutch player, according to her head coach, Scott Collie, with her exploits including a 15-strikeout one-hitter against rival Northern Nash, and driving in both the tying and go-ahead run in the 3-A Big East Conference championship game against Franklin.
“I’m just really, really proud of her, because like I said, she grew up,” Collie said. “She took that step that all great players have to take. She went from being a complimentary piece as a freshman and a sophomore to being one of our main cogs, one of our key cogs last year.”
Daniel will leave a lasting impact on the Southern Nash program, both on and off the softball field.
“She’s competitive,” Collie said. “When she steps on the field, she’s all business. When she’s in the circle, she’s just completely focused. Like I said, she’s a hard worker. Those are things that you have to have. One of the things that I was really proud of this year was she really took on a leadership role. We had a JV team this past year, and she was really good about trying to help when they had games, keeping the scorebook, taking on some of them and taking on a leadership role. I was really proud of that. She just made some tremendous strides during her time in the program.”
Daniel, the daughter of Tiffany and Jason Daniel, currently has a 3.875 GPA as she’s set to graduate next month. She also played for the Carolina Gold Fast Pitch Softball Team, and works at Vitality Nutrition in Wilson.
She previously played volleyball both for Southern Nash and the Bunn club team, but, over the past two years, turned her focus completely to softball as she sought to make her dream of playing at the next level a reality.
“It honestly means the world to me,” Daniel said. “My whole life, I’ve always wanted to play softball. When I was like eight years old, me and my Dad would sit in the living room and watch girls play in college. Ever since then, I have always dreamed of doing it. So getting to do it is absolutely incredible to me and my whole family.”
Daniel credits her time at Southern Nash for getting to play at the next level.
She said the tutelage of the Southern Nash coaches, including Collie has helped her get to where she is now. Daniel said that Southern Nash assistant coach Melanie Hicks in particular, who played college softball at Lander University from 2012 to 2015, has helped her get ready for what life will be like as a student-athlete.
“A lot of how I am today, I’ll put it all on coach Hicks,” Daniel said. “Her being a student athlete in the past has definitely shaped me into who I am today. So it’s prepared me a lot for it. Playing under the lights there and seeing the people from your school come to support you, and all of Spring Hope comes when we get to the playoffs. Everyone is so proud of our community.”
Daniel looks forward to representing Southern Nash at the college level, following in the footsteps of the likes of Ricki Bartley and Kierstin Cooper, two former Firebirds softball players now playing at Barton College.
“It’s honestly great,” Daniel said. “And it’s so crazy, because I see all of my friends going to play football at (N.C. State). All of the guys always end up representing Southern Nash, so being a girl to go represent Southern at the next level is amazing. … Honestly just getting to be in the same group as (Bartley and Cooper) and being some of the few girls that go represent Southern Nash, especially coming out of softball, it’s amazing getting to know that I’m going to represent Southern Nash.”
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