Cavalier Corner

April 2013

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cavalier profile Taylor Williams Fourth-Year • Softball Fourth-year softball player Taylor Williams has overcome an injury that sidelined her at the end of last season and is back on the field looking to finish out her career the way she started it — making an impact on and off the field. During her first-year season, the Woodbridge, Va., native started in the outfield in all 56 games she played, batted .246 and stole 12 bases, while the Cavaliers advanced to an NCAA regional for the first time in program history. As a second-year, she started 55 games, hit .260, drove in 14 runs and stole 18 bases. Yet, while success on the field is important, Williams also realizes that growth as a student-athlete and as a leader at UVa is something she can share with her teammates. "One of the things as a first year, [you have] that eagerness to want to play and prove yourself," she said. "That is something that a team always needs, and it serves as a reminder as to why we play the sport. Then you end up as a fourth-year, trying to get others to want to play with you and for you. "Also being able to lead by pure experience, 'Trust me when I tell you this because I have done it before.' There is that maturity that comes with the experience." Williams has talked about Thomas Jefferson since she was little, so UVa was a great fit for this thinker. Even at the plate, she is a strategist. "As a slapper [a slap hitter], you always have the defense guessing, it keeps them on their heels," Williams said. "I can drop the ball one at-bat and drive the ball the next. The outfield may not know where to play me." Williams is on track to receive a degree in media studies, and in women, gender and sexuality. She is planning to leverage her double major first as an intern with Fox Sun Sports in Orlando, Fla., and then wherever the world takes her. Wherever she goes, Williams remains grounded, giving credit where it is due. "Coach [Eileen] Schmidt, she is all about making sure we are well-rounded people, well-rounded athletes," Williams noted. — Sean Corso ◆ Photo by Matt Riley/courtesy UVa

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