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Fort Smith/Fayetteville News | 5newsonline KFSM 5NEWS | Get the local news and weather where you live from 5NEWS. Covering Fort Smith, Fayetteville, Bentonville, and all of Northwest Arkansas and the River Valley.

Taylor Head's strong year earning honors

SEC Freshman of the Year has been working towards the top her whole life

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Easter Sunday started off with a surprise for Arkansas volleyball’s Taylor Head.

“I was walking to church and I saw Jessica, and she said congratulations, you’re SEC Freshman of the Year, and I was like, what.”

Head might be the only one actually surprised by the honor. She was the only freshmen in the nation in the top-20 in both kills and digs, and won the SEC Freshman of the Week award three times. She’s been excelling on the court since she first picked up a volleyball at age 8.

“When I was younger I played every sport, but I never fell in love with a sport. My mom showed me a news article about volleyball tryouts and was like, why not try this? I showed up in like, Converse and jean shorts and ended up loving it. That was the start of it, and I just never stopped.”

Growing up with parents who played college sports and two brothers, one of who now plays baseball at Austin Peay, was the ultimate training ground.

“We were always doing something competitive, or turning things into a game that I need to win. They were always pushing me to be the best I can be, and without that I don’t think I’d be where I’m at today.”

 Her parents are back in Florida,  but still found a pandemic-friendly way to support their daughter.

“They’ve taken the RV up here a couple times, Georgia, Kentucky,” laughs Head.

Because nothing’s more important than family right? Well, maybe one thing.

“We all love to be able to have bragging rights too, that’s huge in the household.”

SEC Freshman of the year might just be a good place to start.

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