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Stalwart shortstop leads the Spartans

By Shawn Scott - Issaquah / Sammamish Reporter, 04/29/18, 11:45AM PDT

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Juenke is a brick wall in the infield for Skyline.

Photo courtesy of Don Borin/Stop Action Photography
                                Skyline Spartans softball player Taylor Juenke is at the plate against the Issaquah Eagles in a KingCo 4A contest earlier this season. Juenke will play collegiate softball at Stony Brook University in New York in 2019.

Photo courtesy of Don Borin/Stop Action Photography Skyline Spartans softball player Taylor Juenke is at the plate against the Issaquah Eagles in a KingCo 4A contest earlier this season. Juenke will play collegiate softball at Stony Brook University in New York in 2019.

Skyline Spartans senior shortstop Taylor Juenke is undoubtedly one of the most athletic players in the KingCo 4A Conference.

Juenke, who committed this past summer to the Stony Brook University Division-1 softball program, utilizes her talents at arguably the most important position on the field, shortstop.

“I love playing short because you get to be all over the field. It is really fun to get to control the field and be a voice out there. You have to cover a lot of ground. I like it a lot,” Juenke said. “I have played short forever. I played a lot of different sports growing up (basketball, soccer). They (coaches) just thought shortstop was where I belonged since elementary school.”

Juenke said she initially didn’t anticipate playing collegiate softball but can’t wait to move to the East Coast this summer. Stony Brook University is just 57 miles from the metropolis of New York City.

“I was pretty set on staying close to home and just going to the University of Washington (for academics). This was an opportunity that just came to me over the summer during travel ball. I’m just so excited to have such a great opportunity, to be able to go that far, experience a new culture and be so close to New York City. They (Stony Brook University) have a great engineering school too.”

Before Juenke makes her move to the East Coast, she wants to do everything she can to ensure the Spartans’ softball program attains its goals during the 2018 season. Skyline has compiled an overall record of 6-5 thus far this season.

“The goal for us is to do really well in KingCo (tournament). That is really where we want to succeed and do well. We want to compete, outplay our competitors and from there hopefully make it on to state (tournament). We have to take it one game at a time,” Juenke said. “We have a really strong team chemistry. It is really a great group of girls.”

Recently the Issaquah Reporter had an opportunity to ask Juenke a few questions about life away from the softball field.

Issaquah Reporter: What is your favorite movie of all time?

Taylor Juenke: My favorite movie of all time is definitely “The Parent Trap.” I used to always watch it with my family.

IR: What is your biggest pet peeve?

TJ: I would probably say when people are mean to one another. I think everyone should be kind to each other. That is my biggest thing for sure.

IR: What is your favorite hobby away from sports?

TJ: I really like math. I like tutoring in math. I hope to be an engineer and I love tutoring others. It is really fun to make the light blub go on for other people.

IR: What is the last movie you saw in the theater?

TJ: I saw “A Quiet Place” last weekend. It was really good and scary. I don’t do scary movies very well. I looked away for most of the time but it was fun.

IR: What is your dream vacation spot?

TJ: I really want to go to Fiji or somewhere tropical. I would also like to go to the Caribbean or Hawaii. I would love that. I love swimming.

IR: How many text messages do you send per day?

TJ: All of my friends agree that I’m really bad at responding to texts. I would say maybe 5-10 per day. I don’t look at my phone as much as I should.

IR: What kind of music are you listening to the most in your car right now?

TJ: I listen to alternative and indie music. I go to a lot of hole-in-the-wall concerts.