Keaton Taylor, a former Belfry High School standout athlete, who starred in both football and baseball, will be heading to Potomac State College of WVU to play baseball this autumn.
Taylor had previously announced that he would stay closer to home and play at the University of Pikeville, but he changed his mind and will now continue his career at Potomac State, which is located in Keyser, West Virginia.
“After my visit at Potomac State and talking with Coach Little, I had a change of heart,” Taylor said. “I wanted to stay close to home at first, but I saw bigger things if I went away for my baseball career.”
“I have always loved baseball and wanted to play at the highest college level. Playing for Potomac State I will have a better chance to be seen by bigger schools and have the chance to play ball year round and improve my game,” Taylor added. “I plan to take general studies my first semester because I am undecided on a major at this time.”
The speedy Taylor was the Region Player of the Year in 2014 in Kentucky and was one of the Pirates top hitters the past two seasons. He played several positions including shortstop, center field and pitcher.
During his junior season in 2014, Taylor batted .411 going 53-for-129 with seven doubles and two triples. He also had 19 RBIs, scored 61 runs and stole 52 bases. The runs scored and stolen bases are Belfry school records for a single season.
In 2015, as a senior, Taylor batted .353 going 30-for-85; with seven doubles; one triple and one home run, while knocking in 10 RBIs and scoring 32 runs. He also stole 14 bases. Many teams pitched around him after the success he had during his junior year.
Taylor was also the quarterback for Belfry’s 2014 Class AAA state championship football team and he also played running back and wide receiver.
Taylor’s high school coach Michael Hagy says the “sky is the limit” for the Belfry product.
“I’m really excited for him. This is a great opportunity for him,” Hagy said. “Coach Little is a good baseball guy and I’m sure he will make Keaton feel right at home.”
The Catamounts are coached by Doug Little, who is a longtime college baseball mentor. Many Potomac State players transfer on to Division One schools after they play their first two years at the junior college. Many of their students earn two-year degrees, but they also offer four-year programs. The school is a division of West Virginia University with residence halls and sports teams.
“I’ve always said that if Keaton could concentrate 100 percent on baseball he could get even better,” coach Hagy added. “We’ve seen flashes of his talent. If he will continue to work – he can get even better.”
Potomac State baseball has had seven appearances in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) World Series, including a national championship. The team has won many regional and district titles are surpassed only by the number of players who have moved on to NCAA Division I schools.
(Kyle Lovern is the Editor for the Williamson Daily News. He can be contacted at [email protected] or at 304-235-4242, ext. 2277 or on Twitter @KyleLovern.)