Orange and Blue ranked 23rd in the nation in team GPA
Illinois to face top-seeded No. 10 Michigan in Friday's Quarterfinal
Illinois closed the regular season with a 6-1 victory over Penn State
Illinois topped the Huskers 11-4, then fell 9-4
The Gophers topped the Illini 8-0 (6) and 7-0 in the Big Ten doubleheader
2014 - Freshman: Appeared in 41 games, making 32 starts primarily in right field ... Hit .232 with a .305 on base percentage and a .400 slugging percentage ... Totaled 22 hits, 16 runs, four doubles, four home runs, seven walks and 13 RBI in 95 at bats ... Hit safely and scored in all five games at the Rosemont Rumble, with four of her six hits going for extra bases. Walked, doubled and scored twice in the season opener against UIC, then went 2-for-3 with a double, a walk and three runs scored against Loyola ... Hit her first career home run against IUPUI, going back-to-back with Alex Booker with two outs, then drilled a two-run homer the following morning against Central Michigan ... Singled and scored a key run in the Illini's 2-0 victory over Pittsburgh ... Went 2-for-3 with a walk, a run and two RBI against Binghamton ... Participated in a key double play from right field against Iowa in the second game of the series ... Picked up Illinois' only hit in the Minnesota series finale ... Went 2-for-4 with a home run and four RBI to help lead Illinois past No. 20 Nebraska in the series opener ... Went 1-for-2 with her first career stolen base in game one, then doubled and scored in the nightcap against Wisconsin ... Hit the game-ending RBI double to complete the run-rule victory over No. 4 Michigan ... Went 1-for-2 with a walk and a run in the final game against Penn State ... Broke the scoreless tie in the seventh inning by hitting a leadoff home run to lead the Illini to victory over Iowa in the Big Ten Tournament.
High School: First-team all-state 2013 ... Second-team all-state 2011, 2012 ... Four-time GCAC All-Conference ... Chicago Sun-Times Top 35 Players to Watch 2011 ... Chicago Sun-Times Top 100 Softball Players 2011 ... Chicago Tribune all-state honorable mention 2010 ... Helped lead Trinity High to a second place state 3A finish in 2010, to regional championships in 2011 and 2013, and to a section championship in 2012 ... Finished high school with 47 career home runs ... Played travel ball for Illinois Chill, who finished second in Chicago Metro in 2012, first at the 2013 Queen of Diamonds Tournament and second at the 2013 Chicagoland PGF qualifier.
Personal: Born Nicole Priscilla Evans ... Daughter of Penny and Dave Weinstein, and Kevin and Nancy Evans ... Has two younger siblings, Merrick and Jared ... Father, Kevin Evans, played basketball at Marycrest College, and step-father Dave Weinstein played Tennis at Illinois in 1978 ... Trinity High School Salutatorian ... Illinois State Scholar ... President's Award for Academic Excellence ... Spanish Award 2013 ... Trinity High Third in Class Scholarship 2012 ... English Award 2012 ... Trinity High Second in Class Scholarship 2011 ... Chemistry Award 2011 ... Trinity High Blazer Award 2010 ... First Full Honors 2010, 2011, 2012 ... Student of the Year 2010, 2011 ... Majoring in Kinesiology.
Getting to Know Nicole:
Career Plans: Sports medicine doctor or physical therapist
Fun Fact: My mom's name is Penny so my team calls me Nickel
Restaurant you have to get to when going back home: Rigatoni's
Favorite Midnight Snack: Mango
Three things on your "bucket list": Surf, volunteer in another country, meet the President
What are you most proud of and why? Being second in my class, because it took a lot to balance softball with school.
Favorite Quote: "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate; our deepest fear is we are powerful beyond measure."
Weirdest Quirk: I am a neat freak
If I could visit any place in the world, where would you choose and why? Paris; it has always been my dream.
Secret talent: I've been told I am a decent singer.