South Stokes Taylor Moulton was named to the American Volleyball Coaches Association and Under-Armour Watch List and in the running for one of 72 All-American slots which will be announced in early November.
“Taylor is what I would call a ‘complete’ player,” said head coach Doug Balser. “In the game of volleyball, there is a lot of specialization in today’s game. There aren’t many players who can effectively play every position. Taylor is one of those types of players. Whether we need her to hit, set, pass, or block, she can perform each of those skills at the highest level. Very few players can say that.”
Along with being a leader in the Western Piedmont Conference, Moulton is currently second in the state for total kills (117) and on pace to break the school record this season. As one of ten athletes in North Carolina to receive the Under Armour Watch List honor, Moulton is credited for having a .457 hitting percentage and 97.7 serving average.
“She adds a lot to this year’s varsity team. Not only is she one of the top players in the conference, she has also shown her ability to lead and motivate the team. With only two seniors this year, we have needed her to step up and encourage the younger players and she has done so very effectively,” the coach said.
Balser began working with Moulton as an eighth grader and has been impressed with the growth he’s seen on and off the court.
“While she always had the natural ability, she has worked extremely hard to make herself a better all-around player. In the off season, she is always working on the skills that she believes are her weak points, and she usually will turn them into a strength. If you look at her stats from each year, it is obvious that she is making improvements,” he said.
Moulton loves the thrill of the game.
“I’ve always been a competitive person and love a good challenge,” she said. “I also love how it’s a team sport. The friendships that I’ve made throughout my volleyball career have been irreplaceable. It is a sport where you start out as teammates and end up as family.”
The teen credits Balser for helping her improve not only as a player, but a person.
“Over the years he has taught me character, patience, and the importance of work ethic. I would not be the player I am without him pushing me to be the best that I can be and I can’t thank him enough for everything he’s done for me,” she said.
Moulton was honored with the award at a recent game alongside her teammates, family, and friends.
“I was taken by surprise when I got the award. It was a huge honor and I was very excited that I made it. It showed me that all of my hard work and time that I have been putting in over the years is really paying off,” she said. “It felt great to be recognized in front of the people that have supported me every step of the way. My teammates, Coach Balser, my JO coach Kevin Troup, my parents, my grandparents, and Chipper Rothrock are some of the people that have encouraged me to keep up my hard work and I owe them all a big thank you.”
Amanda Dodson can be reached at (336) 813-2426 or on Twitter at AmandaTDodson.