By HAL MORRIS
10:21 AM EDT, August 19, 2011
Taylor Estes is getting plenty of chances to catch the eye of college softball coaches, and she will also get a chance to represent her county.
The Danville junior catcher has been chosen to participate in the Queen of Diamonds Showcase South next month, and she has been selected as one of 50 players to represent the United States in the World Cup of Softball next January in the Netherlands.
“I’m the only girl from Kentucky going to the World Cup. There’s a lot of preparing for that trip. I’ve got to a fundraiser to be able to go,”¿said Estes, who will be playing for Team USA in Amsterdam. “I hate to say it, but I’m really more excited about the World Cup because I’ll be there a week and play in Amsterdam. So I’m thrilled I’ll be doing that.”
But Estes is not downplaying the importance of the Queen of Diamonds Showcase, which takes places Sept. 3-4 at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, S.C.
“I’d been working with Tim Kazimer at the Morse Academy and he knows Kirt Whiteside, and he hosts tournaments and the Queen of Diamonds Showcase. There are 2,000 appliants, but they only choose 240 girls,”¿Estes said.
The showcase is designed for coaches to look at some of the top softball talent in the south, but Estes said it’s not as easy has just showing up and playing.
“You have to do a ton of paperwork. We have to write letters to coaches and ask them to come watch us, and hopefully they’ll see something they like,”¿she said. “They give you a list of hundreds of colleges, and me and my mom (Amber) sat down and chose the ones we thought would be a good idea to contact.”
Estes, who wrote 68 letters to coaches asking them to come see her play, stuck mainly with Division I schools because that is where she wants to play.
“I guess I kind of limited myself by choosing Division I and a few Division II schools,” Estes said. “I know I’m great player and I’m not going to lower myself. I want to go to a great college that people know about. I think confidence is part of being successful.”
Estes just finished her second summer of playing for the SportsReach travel team out of Louisville. Estes hopes that experience, coupled with the showcase and World Cup in January, will propel her into a big junior year for the Admirals.
“It’s my junior year and this is the time to really shine, and hopefully, I’m doing that well,”¿she said.
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