ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – Lourdes’ Anna Taylor knew the stakes. A state berth for the first time in program history, in a winner-take-all game against the team that eliminated them a year ago at this very juncture.
This year Taylor made sure the story had a different ending, pitching 7 shutout innings against Cotter to lead the Eagles to victory. Lourdes softball got their state tournament berth at last.
“It’s sweet to win [against] every team but especially [Cotter],” Taylor said. “They’re a phenomenal team, so it was really awesome to come away with a win. Just to reminisce on what happened last year it just made it a lot better.”
Taylor has dominated in the circle all season long, racking up 22 wins with a sterling 1.38 ERA. The only thing that surprised the veteran senior this season is that her team had never made it to Mankato.
“It was kind of surprising to hear that we’ve never been to state just because we were such a good all around athletic school, but honestly it felt great being the first team [to make it to state] ever,” she said. “It’s really an accomplishment this year. It’s kind of awesome.”
Anna isn’t just a one-trick pony. Taylor is batting .412 this season and getting on base nearly 50% of the time. Her head coach says that’s what puts her into the upper echelon.
“Anna has really matured into a two-way player,” said head coach Becky Macken. “Not only is she an effective and efficient pitcher, but she’s a decent hitter as well. That’s a good combination to have.”
But it’s her talents against batters that has helped push the Eagles over the hump. And they’re hoping Anna can lead them to some hardware later this week.
“We trust Anna a lot,” Macken said. “And let’s hope that she can shut the door at the state tournament.”
Anna Taylor of the Lourdes Eagles Softball team is this week’s KTTC NewsCenter Sports Athlete of the Week.