Journey to Tokyo: Bubba Nickles

Japan 2020

MERCED, Calif. (KSEE) — Bubba Nickles is an Olympian. She was named to the 15-player U.S. Olympic Softball team back in October.

And she remembers the exact moment.

“I was just doing homework for school,” she smiled. “And Rachel Garcia, my UCLA teammate, too, she texted me and she just said, ‘I’m so proud of you, Bubs!'”

Nickles had homework because she is still in school, one of three college players on the U.S. Olympic Softball team. And due to COVID-19, next year she will return to UCLA before heading to Tokyo.

“I think it’s a dream come true,” said Nickles. “It was a little heartbreaking when I found out that I wouldn’t be able to be with my UCLA team and I kinda was anticipating that if I were to make the tryout.

“As far as skill-wise, that would just prepare me even more for everything that we’re gonna compete for.”

The goal is gold, though Bubba Nickles says she goes in with no expectations. For 12 years, it has been her dream to be an Olympian.

“I saw USA Softball and I saw Lovie Jung,” she said. “She was the second baseman for the Olympic team. And I still joke about it with her to this day, but I always thought, I think she looked like my mom in my eyes.

“I was like, ‘hey, she looks like my mom, maybe I could be like her one day.'”

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