When asking an area softball coach about Taylor Pleasants, the first story that comes to mind isn’t one that happened on the diamond. Instead, it came on the volleyball court.
On September 28 in a match at Summer Creek, a ball was sent towards the scorer’s table. Pleasants took off to make a play on it.
As she approached the table, Pleasants launched into the air, made the play on the ball and then soared over the table into some chairs.
The video of the play has been viewed 185,000 times on her Twitter account.
“Why play if you’re not going to go all out,” Pleasants said. “I’ve always wanted to make a play like that.”
Once she fell over the table, Pleasants smashed into a metal chair, which chipped a lower tooth and also forced her to get a root canal on a top left tooth.
Despite being in pain, Pleasants got a Band-Aid put on her lower lip and played the final set of the match. Pleasants finished the season with 467 kills, 353 digs, 53 aces and 52 blocks. The senior was voted the District 22-6A MVP.
“I would have never expected it, especially for volleyball,” Pleasants, who wants to walk onto the LSU volleyball team her sophomore year, said. “Now I have a chip on my shoulder. If I can do it for volleyball, I have to do it for softball.”
Softball is the sport she has played since she was fiveyears-old and the one she has signed with LSU to play at the next level.
But what’s interesting is, LSU wasn’t originally Pleasants’ first pick.
“I went not expecting to go there,” Pleasants said. “I had my mind set on either OU or Texas A&M. I was pretty big with OU. The family atmosphere at LSU threw everything off. I fell in love. The coaches were very welcoming. The players were fun.”
Another thing Pleasants didn’t expect was getting selected for the USA Softball Junior Women’s National Team.
“I still can’t wrap my head around it,” Pleasants said. “My brothers are part of the Marines and Navy and my sister is a US Postal woman, so I had to get involved with the USA somehow.”
Growing up, Pleasants admitted her father always talked about her playing for Team USA. With softball back in the Olympics starting in Tokyo in 2020, the dream of Olympic gold is next on the list.
“I’m looking for 2024 for sure,” she said.
When sitting and talking with Pleasants, every accolade and team selection mentioned, she seems unfazed and genuinely humbled by it all.
“Everyone says that,” Pleasants said about people saying she’s the best player in Houston. “Even my parents’ friends, they’d be like, she’s so good. I don’t see it. I see myself as everybody else.”
So what has been Pleasants’ biggest challenge on this journey?
“It’s definitely been pushing myself to workout every day,” Pleasants said. “Even after this, I’m going to workout with one of my coaches.”
When Pleasants walks away from Dobie, she admitted that she is ready for LSU but will miss her Longhorn home and hopes people remember her for being a great teammate and friend.
“I want them to remember me as one that never gave up,” Pleasants said. “Always helped others and put others before herself. Just there for everybody.”
Favorite Karaoke Song: All In
Favorite TV Show: Manifest & Empire
Goal at LSU: Become their second four-time, All-American
Who do you Dedicate your Play To: As of two years ago, it was my grandma (Pat Pleasants). She lived in Austin. She was always so supportive and wanted to know how softball was going. Then she passed away right before I committed to LSU.