Quakertown's Vanelli Commits to Play Softball at Salve Regina

On Thursday, March 1, 2018, Quakertown senior Nikki Vanelli was recognized for committing to continue her softball career at Salve Regina University. Check back for photos of the event.

Nikki Vanelli – Salve Regina University (Softball)

Major:  Undeclared but looking into Environmental Studies

Final list of colleges:  Salve Regina, Marist, Binghamton, Iona, Colgate

Reasons for choosing Salve Regina:  “I was really between DI and DIII for a while. I knew I didn’t want to go DII, and I wasn’t sure if I wanted the full commitment. I was looking at a DI school called Marist College. The assistant coach really liked me, and she stepped down and became the head coach at Salve. She went out and recruited me. When you visit Newport, it’s hard not to fall in love with Newport. It’s absolutely beautiful. The school is right on the coast. It’s a very small school, so my classes will all be really personal. Just the vibe you get – the school is so great. Everyone is really nice. It’s a really beautiful school. I was looking at a bunch of DI schools, and none of them really did it for me when I stepped on campus. I visited a few small schools, and Salve really resonated with me.”

What was the progression that led you to competing in softball at the collegiate level?  “I was in a travel program in Newtown since I was a freshman that really was training people to play in college, so I was thinking all along – DI, DI, I’m going to go DI, no question about it. Then I started getting older and realized that’s your entire life, and there’s stuff after softball. School comes first. Not a lot of people go into professional softball. I had to make that really big decision to stop that whole DI emails and settle down to a good DIII school.”

Coach Ray Fox says:  “I’ve known Nikki since she was 10 years old because she played for me back at that time. Back in those days, she was a very timid, very shy, very quiet kind of player on the team that everybody else was like her mom, and they took care of her. From those days to today, I can’t tell you how hard she has worked, not only as a school player but in her travel team experiences, having traveled to many places, having played at many high levels. She’s done unbelievable things. She’s a leader, and the other girls will tell you – she’s a quiet leader. She’s not a rah, rah person. She leads by example, she always does her best. I’ve seen her do amazing things. She plays third base, and if you know this game, the third baseman has to be quick, and that’s why I call her the cat. She is amazingly quick with a very, very strong arm and the ability to do some unbelievable things. She has a very strong bat at the plate. Nikki is a great student. She will be an extremely successful college player. She’ll do well in her academics, and that’s the most important reason you’re going to college.”

About Nikki:
Favorite food: 
Pasta & Meatballs homemade by my father
Favorite movie:  Lilo & Stitch
Favorite music:  Alternative