Genesis Taylor Returns To Alma Mater As Head Coach Of Volleyball Program
MADISON- Once a Jet…always a Jet. That’s how Genesis Taylor feels about her connection to the James Clemens volleyball team as the 22-year old has taken over the reins as head coach of the program she once played for and was team captain.
The 2018 graduate of James Clemens was a star player for the Lady Jets and was one of what was called “The Fab Four” of terrific senior players which included Katie Sharp, Brittan Davis, and Bronte Ray along with Taylor. In their three years of varsity play “The Fab Four” won over 125 matches under head coach Amanda Smith. Taylor played the libero position where in her senior campaign set a school record for most digs in a single season. She was awarded defensive player of the year award and service award among the team in both 2017 and 2018 and was tagged with the leadership award her senior year, as well.
Fast forward to 2023 and Taylor is again on the courts at James Clemens leading the current team after being head coach just prior to school opening after last year’s coach, Shelby-Grace Mays, chose to exit the program for a job in her hometown of Arab. Last year’s Jets squad posted a 13-30 record.
“The goal of the school was to find a teacher and I was taking over the summer camps after Mays left and the attending camp players begged me to stay as even the parents thought it would be a great idea,” said Taylor, who played college volleyball at Wallace State, Lawson State and Auburn-Montgomery.
Taylor graduated with a degree in nursing and currently works as a registered nurse in the medical ICU area at Huntsville Hospital where she tackles 12-hour shifts three days a week. “I work the night shift, and I, honestly, plan around my schedule and so far, it’s working out,” added Taylor.
About to celebrate her 23rd birthday on Aug. 31, Taylor is not new to coaching volleyball as she handled similar duties for both United Club and NASA Club Teams. Getting back into the confines of James Clemens was a thrilling moment for her as she said, “I love the James Clemens spirit we have here at this school and I truly believe that, along with my coaching style, brings out the best in the players. I expect and demand a lot of them, much like the guidelines I was under when I played here.”
The 2023 roster includes five seniors- Addison Delaney, Kayden Gray, Pari Malhotra, Sydney Plant and Kylie Farmer. Taylor is looking at her returning starters to lead the squad and are led by senior Kayden Gray and junior Jasmine Brantley. Taylor said of her two on-court leaders, “They are both very talented, extremely competitive and have great work ethic. They are constantly always trying to get extra reps on the court and are my most consistent hitters and are all-round players.”
“We’re a strong team as we definitely have a good group of girls to represent James Clemens,” added Taylor. “Scrappy would be a good description of this team.”