It wasn’t enough that Taylor Dockins would survive liver cancer to return as a starting pitcher for the nation’s top-ranked softball program. No, the Norco star returned to become the ace, and go on to tie the all time California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section record with 103 career wins.
Dockins tied the existing mark, owned by former Mission Viejo star Taylor McQuillin, on the same afternoon that Norco trailed in a game for the first time all season. Corona Santiago briefly took a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the first inning before Norco’s offense bounced back, racking up four unanswered runs across the following six innings as Dockins settled into a groove for a 5-3 victory, and 28-0 record this season.
“My pitching was not the best today, but my team stepped up and had my back,” Dockins told the Riverside Press-Enterprise.
Afterward, the mothers of Dockins and McQuillin exchanged encouraging words about their respective Taylors and their softball careers. Dockins, who underwent surgery to remove a cancerous section of her liver in July, has responded without missing a beat during her senior season before she heads to Cal State Fullerton. McQuillin emerged as a top high school recruit and, now, the ace of the Pac-12 champion Arizona Wildcats staff despite suffering from Duane Syndrome, which left her permanently blind in her left eye and hearing in one ear as well.