By Ashley Pickert
Senior catcher and Austin Texas native, Taylor Garcia is determined to make every second of her final season with the University of Dallas softball team count. Garcia is a drama major and has been working simultaneously on her Senior Studio while proving herself a formidable force on the softball field this semester. Recently, I had the privilege of discussing with her just how she manages to do it all.
AP: What got you started playing softball?
TG: I played every sport I could when I was little. I was only good at a couple of them, and softball was my favorite. My mother and grandmother played, and my grandfather was a catcher. My parents never limited me, so I eventually decided to play the sport that would make them get up at 5 a.m. weekend after weekend and sit out in the heat or the freezing cold for 14 hours.
AP: What do you love about softball? What drives you to continue to play?
TG: Softball is an amazing game. I love playing in the dirt, for one. We play hard and fast, and the mental game is huge. The little things matter the most, and it’s neat how they can change the outcome of one play or an entire game.
AP: What is your favorite memory from playing on the University of Dallas softball team thus far?
TG: My absolute favorite memory so far is hitting a timely home run in the SCAC [Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference] Championship Tournament last year. I was so happy to be able to come off an injury and perform well. We are constantly having fun, but some of my other favorite memories are on road trips with the team. Things get silly and goofy, and we learn so much about our other teammates — yet we still love each other somehow.
AP: Who is your role model?
TG: My mother and my aunts, Michelle and Renee. They are seriously the strongest women, and I admire them every day for it. My softball role model is Cat Osterman. My family was lucky to have her awesome presence in our lives when she was a young ace at the University of Texas at Austin. Since then, her professionalism and determination in her coaching jobs and with National Pro Fastpitch have been spectacularly inspirational.
AP: What do you think about when you are up to bat?
TG: Before I step in the box, I think about my plan — what pitch am I looking for, and how I’m going to hit it in order to get a job done. I take a deep breath, step in and clear my head completely.
AP: What are your thoughts about the team this year?
TG: This year’s team is still learning how to click with one another. We’ve got some insane talent on defense and offense. Once we realize that it’s going to take every one of us doing our job in order to be successful, we will be.
AP: What do you hope to take away from these past four years?
TG: A lot of great memories and a handful of really wonderful friends. And a killer set of quads, obviously.
AP: What do you like to do when you are not playing softball?
TG: I like to watch the San Antonio Spurs play, I love being in the theater and I have a serious addiction to watching movie and television gag reels.
AP: What are your plans for this summer and next year?
TG: I’ll be working at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island in Michigan this summer as the Children’s Program Director. After that, I’ll head back down to Austin to work in the theater and be near my family.
AP: How would you sum up your experience of being a drama major and a softball player in one sentence?
TG: A rollercoaster — it’s the most challenging, most strenuous and hands down the most rewarding endeavor I’ve ever been blessed and trusted with.
AP: If there was a movie produced about your life, who would play you, and why?
TG: I think I’d want it to be Sandra Bullock because she’s a really brilliant comedic and dramatic actress, and she’s an Austin girl like me.