Khala Taylor ended her freshman season with the highest batting average on the team and was a Pac-12 All-Freshman selection. While the speedy outfielder has decided to pursue her longtime dream of competing in the Olympics, she still had plenty of great memories from year one to share in this week’s Freshman Follow-Up.
CalBears.com: What was your favorite part about your first year of collegiate softball?
Khala Taylor: How close our team got, ending the year by making the Pac-12 All-Freshman Team, and being announced as an Easton All-American.
CalBears.com: What was your favorite softball game or series this season, and why?
KT: My favorite series would have to be when we played against UCLA. The whole series was intense and nerve-wracking on top of being aired on ESPN and I enjoyed every minute of it.
CalBears.com: What was your favorite class?
KT: Nutritional Science 10
CalBears.com: What is the best part about being a student-athlete at Cal?
KT: The best about being a student-athlete at Cal is the tradition, heritage and honor that every athletic program upholds constantly walking all around campus. I am more than proud to represent the university and Cal Athletics because I could not see myself anywhere else but here. It is an absolute blessing.
CalBears.com: What is the best thing you learned your freshman year (either on the field or in the classroom)?
KT: That you have to work hard to get where you want to be and once you get there, do not settle because there is always someone else out there in this world that is waking up earlier than you, training harder than you and working extra hard on his/her mechanics and crafts. Never settle on your greatness -- want more than what you are working for.
CalBears.com: What are you most excited about for in your sophomore year? What are you looking forward to in your academics?
KT: I'm looking forward and very excited to reveal a new chapter in my life, with my decision to run Track and Field for Cal. I am definitely looking forward to getting straight A's in all of my classes this year…which I always tell myself in the beginning.
CalBears.com: What surprised you the most about your freshman year?
KT: I was most surprised in the fact that I was on my own and accountable for my own actions involved in my studies, focus, time management and free time.
CalBears.com: What was your secret to balancing elite softball with world-class academics?
KT: School first, softball next.
CalBears.com: What advice would you give to Cal’s new freshmen?
KT: This is nothing like high school, so buckle up and be ready to have some sleepless nights and hard classes…but you will do great.
CalBears.com: What is your funniest or most embarrassing memory from your freshman year?
KT: The funniest moment of mine would have to be my first collegiate at-bat ever on the Cal softball team. I popped up a bunt. It wasn't funny at the time, but it is now.