NORTON SHORES, Mich. -- Muskegon Mona Shores softball player, Taylor Dew, has hit 17 home runs this season and is aiming for the state's single season record of 20.
The 6 foot 1 inch junior said she's been humbled to break her school's record and would be ecstatic to break the state record. “It would be so cool. I mean I’ve always kind of paid attention to it, but I never really thought of it like being realistic. That seemed liked so many. I was like that’s not possible. I don’t understand that. And now that I’m kind of close to it, I’d like to do that for myself. It’d just be really cool to do.”
Head coach, Jason Crago, has enjoyed seeing her grow the past three years. “It would be special. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t something unique that we are all cherishing. It’s a team sport and I don’t think Taylor ever loses that focus that it’s a team sport, but your goal at the plate is to hit it hard and we would love to see her do it and we’re hoping she will, but we know that in the end she’s just a team player.”
A team player who has been a part of the Varsity Softball program at Mona Shores since her freshman year, when she broke the school's single season record with 8 home runs. Since then she's only continued to get better.
“Well I think it’s easy for everybody to celebrate the home runs when they happen and to admire her talent," Coach Crago said. "But what a lot of people don’t see is how hard she works. She puts hours upon hours all winter, all fall. She plays all summer. She has tried to get better every single year and it’s showing. It’s showing this year.”
Taylor agreed that it's taken some work to get to where she's at.“I’ve had a desire to because I wanted to get better and improve myself and just be the best I could, so I put a lot of effort into it. I’ve had a little hitting lessons and I’ve worked out a lot lately. So, I’ve just put a lot of time and effort into it.”
And the hard work is clearly paying off for the 16 year old, as she's learned to send even more pitches over the fence.
AND IT’S CLEARLY PAYING OFF… THIS YEAR TAYLOR HAS LEARNED TO SEND EVEN MORE PITCHES OVER THE FENCE…
"The pitchers have been trying to throw it away from her and stay outside and she’s been able to take that ball over the right field fence, which her first two years it was very difficult for her to do," Coach Crago noted. "So that’s been the change. And the ability to just square it up. That’s the hardest thing to do in sports is to hit a round ball with a round bat and she does it well.”
And Taylor showed Fox 17's Stephanie Funkhouser just how hard it is to hit home runs today at practice, beating Stephanie 5-0.