Friday Flashback: Ward throws no-hitter for Villanova in 2008
Eagle River’s Nicci Ward had it all working for the Villanova University softball team on April 20, 2008.
The senior right-handed pitcher threw a no-hitter in a 1-0 win over Providence College in the Big East Conference.
Ward, of Chugiak High fame, is believed to be the only Alaska softball player to toss a 7-inning no-hitter at the NCAA D1 level.
She struck out eight of 25 batters, issued three walks and benefited from a two-out walkoff double to score the winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning.
In the fifth inning, Ward was forced to record four outs after the first batter struck out and reached base on a passed ball. She escaped a two-on, two-out jam that inning with a strikeout.
Ward finished her final season with a 10-9 record, seven complete games and 2.12 ERA in 28 appearances. She struck out 153 batters in 141.2 innings.
She spent her first two years of college at Florida CC Jacksonville, where she was twice named first team all-conference.
Ward was a three-time Gatorade Alaska Player of the Year in high school.
Friday Flashback is a series created by Alaska Sports Hall of Fame blog editor Van Williams that looks back on great Alaska athletes from the past. To read about other Alaskans featured in this series, click here.