Catching up with the Double-Win twins
by Staff Writer
by Cliff Mehrtens
The Ervin twins aren’t afraid to take on softball challenges.
Start a new program with a bang? They helped brand-new Hopewell High win state championships the first two years the school existed (2002 and 2003).
Start a second program, this time on a higher level?
The Ervins did that, too. Shaina, the pitcher, and Miranda, the catcher, were the first players to sign with North Carolina State when it began a softball program.
The twins were pioneers, wearing cleats and gloves.
“Playing at Hopewell definitely set the foundation for the success my sister and I had in college,” Shaina Ervin said. “Having the honor of starting a program is pretty special. We helped put Hopewell on the athletic map, and that unique experience was a big reason why we thought we were a perfect fit for N.C. State.”
The twins, 26, haven’t left softball since those halcyon days at Hopewell.
Shaina is an assistant coach at Georgia Tech. Miranda is head coach at Queens University, a NCAA Division II program in Charlotte.
Their plans are to one day coach together. For now, they’re each working on Master’s degrees and helping shape college players.
The Ervin twins went to North Mecklenburg High their first two years of high school, and switched to Hopewell when it opened. The Titans’ success, in a large part because of the Ervins, had softball folks statewide asking “Where’s Hopewell?”
“We loved the game so much, and were able to make that connection,” Miranda Ervin said. “We worked hard every day. We wanted to win and make a name for Hopewell. I’m so proud to be a part of something where we could set a tradition.”
Shaina was an All-American pitcher at Hopewell, and a two-time state most valuable player. As a senior, she shared the award with Miranda. In two seasons at Hopewell, Shaina had a 49-5 pitching record. She threw four perfect games and 11 no-hitters as a senior. As a junior, her earned run average was a miniscule 0.09.
Shaina’s best memory?
“My sister being my catcher, and when we won that first championship, throwing my glove into the air,” she said. “It was really special to be a part of that team.”
To prove Hopewell wasn’t a one-year wonder, the Ervins were key parts of another N.C. Class 4A championship team as seniors.
“We’d created a great gel,” Shaina Ervin said. “We were all one unit, and on the same page. We worked hard and believed in each other.”
The sisters agreed that the success they had at Hopewell made N.C. State an enticing choice in college.
By their junior year in college, the twins had led N.C. State to an Atlantic Coast Conference championship. Shaina Ervin was the ACC Tournament’s Most Valuable Player in 2006.
After college, Miranda Ervin thought about a career in broadcasting. But then she played six months professionally in Italy.
“I realized how much I love the game,” she said, laughing. “As a coach now, sometimes I love to hate the game. But I knew then I wanted to get into coaching and make an impact on other players.”
The twins communicate about four or five times daily, usually via text. They chat about coaching and family in the few spare moments they can carve around practices, games and recruiting trips.