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UPDATE: Marian Catholic's Nickel Gets the Biggest Roar from the Crowd

Marian Catholic softball fans know this about Alex Nickel: She plays with determination and heart. And they roared for her in Patch's weekly MVP voting. Nickel outpolled nine others to become eligible for April Patch Athlete of the Month recognition.

Your Patch is a place to celebrate local high school athletes. Show your support for these prep sports MVPs—each of whom is Athlete of the Week in his or her local Patch—by cheering them on in the comments thread, sharing your own photos with the Patch community and voting in the poll.

Do you think we're missing someone? Tell us in the comments and share his or her photo to the gallery above. (It's easy. Just click the Upload Photos and Videos link — .)

Read more about this week's MVPs in the photo gallery, and show your support for them by:

  1. Voting in the poll, which is open until 9 p.m. Thursday, April 19.
  2. Commenting on the article.
  3. Share more photos of your favorite Patch athlete.

There is one more way for you to become a more interactive fan: Sign up to become a Patch sports blogger. ().

bob busch April 17, 2012 at 02:34 PM
Homecoming 2012 While going North on the 355 bridge in Lemont on Christmas Eve I looked up and what I saw took my Breath away. There soaring above the river was a bald eagle. Nobody else saw it and quite frankly said I was nuts nobody thinks I am nuts now. Today we celebrate the return of a symbol . For the first time since the 1850’s Bald eagles have come home to nest in Palos.
Donny April 19, 2012 at 04:27 AM
Hey Ron- How come there isn't that much sports reporting for the spring? Baseball, soccer, track, etc in full swing and yet hardly any consistent reporting on games-just the "athlete of the week" stuff. Seemed like the Patch was all into football season (which I get is easy since games are once a week), but there are TONS of high school sporting events going on throughout each week. Really would like to see stories and recaps of games that are going on.
Andrea Nickel April 20, 2012 at 12:39 AM
I voted for Alex Nickel because I have seen her play many times, and when she plays, she plays with heart. Not only does her skill show, but also her love for the game. She is my MVP vote of the week.

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