Senior Spotlight: Priceville’s Taylor Dean
Taylor Dean has spent most of her life on or around the softball field. She took her first swing in a game at the age of 4.
Dean was the only senior on this year’s Lady Bulldog softball team. She has been part of the program going back to her freshman season.
She and her teammates were working toward their goal of making it to the state tournament – with 7-3-1 and 2-0 in area play records – when the AHSAA moved to cancel the spring sports season March 27, after schools were canceled for the remainder of the year.
Q: When did you get started playing softball?
A: After a year of T-ball at the age of 4 and a year of baseball at the age of 5, I started playing the game of softball at the age of 6. After that, I was hooked on the game of softball.
Q: When did you know you wanted to play for the Lady Bulldogs?
A: I knew I wanted to play for Priceville at a young age. Starting toward the end of 10U, my coaches began preparing my teammates and me for the next level after PCRA. We began training and practicing to be a part of the PHS softball team. Our drive was fueled when one of Priceville’s very own, Danielle Richard, went on to play in college for the University of Alabama.
Q: What was it like waiting for your moment to come?
A: As I grew older, I began to realize my moment was indeed coming at some point or another. I just kept asking myself, “What do I want my moment to look like?” I knew I wanted to have a successful season for not only myself but for the Priceville softball program. So as the seasons passed by, it was amazing to work alongside my teammates to better ourselves and the future of our program.
Q: How did you feel when you got the news that your season had come to a close long before you planned?
A: When Gov. Ivey made the call to cancel school and athletics for the remainder of the year, I honestly have never experienced such a mix of emotions. I went on an emotional roller coaster from periodically being sad to confused, numb and even a little angry. I cried, I yelled, and I asked “Why?” because within a blink of an eye, that special milestone I had been eagerly expecting was taken away.
Q: What are your thoughts now that you have had some time to think about the loss of your season?
A: Now that I have had a few days to wrap my mind around the situation, I am choosing to be grateful for every opportunity I had to play the sport I loved. I am choosing to be grateful for my teammates and my coaches who made going to practice one of the many highlights of my day.
Q: What are your plans for after graduation?
A: After graduation, I plan on attending Troy University to pursue a degree in nursing.
Q: What do you wish to say to your teammates?
A: To my teammates and any other athlete that might be reading this, I implore you to play every game like it could be your last, and I hope you embrace every moment because you never know what the future holds. So although COVID-19 took away my last opportunity to play on the field, it did not and cannot take away my passion, love and respect for the game. I will forever be a Lady Bulldog!