Gremillion provides charge


Senior Nicole Gremillion has started all 37 games in left field and batting leadoff for softball this season.

By Frank Gogola

Consistency is the first thing Nicole Gremillion’s coaches and teammates mention when they talk about her.

Senior left fielder Gremillion, of Missouri City, Texas, has started in 191 of 201 games during more than three seasons in DeKalb. In each of her last two seasons, she’s finished in the top two on the team in batting average, slugging percentage, runs scored, hits, doubles, triples, home runs and stolen bases.

This season, Gremillion’s started in left field and hit leadoff in all 37 games.

“I’m not positive that I’m going to be there every game, but being there helps me focus on other people,” Gremillion said. “Knowing my surroundings and who I’m going to be playing with … it really helps our communication.”

In the field, Gremillion has committed only two errors in 72 chances, and she hasn’t been tagged for an error in 21 chances in conference play. Her .973 fielding percentage is second among everyday fielders.

“Nicole always has been a consistent player for these last two years that I’ve been here,” said head coach Christina Sutcliffe. “She’s one of those people who’s going to get it done in the batter’s box, and [she] provides her leadership out in the field.”

At the plate, Gremillion leads the Huskies with 15 multiple-hit games and 44 hits, which ranks sixth in the MAC. Her season-long seven-game hitting streak is the second-longest such streak on the team.

“I think I just have to get on for the next people that are up because I know if I start it off then they’re going to get me over and get me around to score,” Gremillion said. “Really, my job is just to find a way, any way possible, to get on base, and then they’ll take care of the rest.”

On the season, Gremillion has posted an on-base percentage of .399 and had a team-best 14-game reached-base streak.

“Nicole’s very consistent,” said senior shortstop Shelby Miller. “Every day — day in, day out — we know that she’s going to bring something to the table. She’s going to make a spectacular play in the outfield. She’s going to come up big with the big hit. We rely on her a lot for that: to come through in the leadoff spot.”

Leading off an inning, Gremillion has hit .415 (22-for-53), well above her .346 batting average, which ranks third on the team and 12th in the MAC among qualified batters. Her 26 runs scored paces the Huskies and is tied for sixth-most in the MAC.

Gremillion was named to the All-MAC First Team following her sophomore and junior seasons. She said she doesn’t concern herself with season-long individual stats or awards; she just focuses on the next at-bat and the next fly ball.

“I just take it day by day, game by game, really,” Gremillion said.