By Richard Pryor III
It’s been a busy winter for Bella Taylor (C’19). You might not know it if you talk to her, but the junior guard from Sparta, Tennessee, has, in the last month, become the thirteenth player in Sewanee Women’s Basketball history to make 1,000 points in her career and broke a 37 year-old record for most points scored in a game with 40 points. Taylor has also won 2 Southern Athletic Association player of the week awards so far, the most of any player this season.
That’s not what stands out about Taylor, though. It is a strong work ethic that has driven her to be one of the most consistent players on the Tigers and in the SAA. Taylor not only leads the Tigers and the SAA in scoring, with 21 points per game, but is one of Sewanee’s best consistent shooters with a field goal percentage of 42.8%, the third-highest on the Tigers and a 79.8% free throw rate, also third-highest on the Tigers.
Taylor also leads the Tigers in steals with 2.8 per game and rebounds with 5.4 per game (alongside Hannah McCormack (C’18)). She has established herself as a frontrunner for SAA player of the year, and with rematches against teams that she lit up on earlier this season, such as Berry, Hendrix, and Birmingham Southern, she can go much further than her spot on last season’s All-SAA First Team.
Taylor is also a natural leader and teammate on the court. Allison Hitchcock (C’20) reveals that Taylor is “without a doubt an essential part of our team, and because of her scoring abilities, playing with her is fun. There’s never a dull day with her!” Marlee Smith (C’20) refers to Taylor as a “leader on and off the court,” who “works hard every day to get better and it shows.”