Taylor set the foundation for the Lady Buccaneers’ program, which he began from scratch in 2008. The team’s peak came when it won back-to-back region championships in two different classifications in 2012 and 2013.
“We’re very happy with the six years he put in with us and appreciate the hard work he put in to make it the way it is,” Morrell said.
“We have had more applications in the four hours after posting the job than we did when we were trying to hire the initial position. That lets you know that people are looking at it and it’s a desirable position. We haven’t had a lot of coaching turnover at Allatoona and it’s not something that we’re used to.”
Taylor could not be reached for comment.
The Allatoona girls’ most productive year under Taylor came in 2011-12, when they finished 26-5. The Lady Buccaneers won their annual Lake City Classic and added a Region 7AAA title before making a run to the state quarterfinals.
After moving up two more classifications before the 2012-13 season, Taylor and the Lady Buccaneers came through with another region title — this time in 5AAAAA — before making it to the second round of the state tournament.
Allatoona’s success had much to do with the class of seniors who graduated last spring, including Elise Spann, Alexis Ezell, Alyssa Dobson and Jessica Finch.
That quartet never experienced a losing season in their four years at Allatoona. As freshmen, they helped the Lady Buccaneers improve from a 2-24 record the previous season — Allatoona’s inaugural team — to go 15-11.
But once that foursome graduated, Taylor had to groom a younger and more inexperienced team, and the Lady Buccaneers finished with an even 13-13 mark. A loss to Hiram in the quarterfinal round prevented the team from clinching a state playoff berth.
Taylor came to Allatoona with a resume of success, beginning with a tenure as an assistant to longtime girls coach Sheryl Fowler at McEachern. After Fowler left to start Hillgrove’s program, Taylor assisted Mike Thompson with the McEachern boys team, and he also coached the Indians’ boys track and field program to a pair of state championships in 2007 and ’08.
A Cobb County native who graduated from Osborne in 1998, Taylor’s brother, Clay, is the longtime volleyball coach at Harrison.