TIPP CITY — Troy High School junior Macie Taylor still remembers the first time she gave serious thought to scoring 1,000 career points in basketball.
And it might be a little longer ago than you might think.
“I remember when I was in the sixth grade — maybe even younger,” Taylor said. “There was a newspaper article about me and my sister (her older sister Mckenna) and that we would be playing in the Troy program. Ever since, then I have wanted to score 1,000 points.”
And the milestone moment came in typical “Macie” fashion. A steal and layup with 1:24 to go in the first quarter pushed Taylor’ point total to 1,001 for her career.
“Definitely (she knew when she made the steal it was going to happen),” Taylor said.
And Taylor never does anything without a purpose.
“It wasn’t just scoring 1,000 points,” she said. “It was doing it as a junior. That was the big thing. That was important to me. I think it sends a message to the rest of the league about me.”
And while the game was played at Tippecanoe, Lady Red Devils coach Christina Pentaudi knew the game needed to be stopped.
“We knew there was a good chance it was going to happen,” Pentaudi said about Taylor getting her 1,000th point. “Our AD (athletic director Kregg Creamer and I had talked about it). We wanted to stop the game and give her that moment. That is quite an accomplishment to do it as a junior. That is impressive.”
Ironically, anyone who has played with Taylor or watched her play knows she could easily have a lot more points.
Not only has she been a prolific scorer in her three years — she scored 325 points as a freshman and followed it with 398 last year and has scored 282 so far this season in 18 games — she also has 213 assists in her career.
Troy has been 14-9 in her first two seasons and is on the way to topping that this year with a 12-6 mark after the 57-45 loss to the Red Devils — which would be Taylor’s only regret.
“It was a tough game,” she said. “We really battled hard. We had a good comeback. We gave it everything we had and came up a little short.”
The one key ingredient is Taylor makes her teammates better — which is no secret to Troy coach Jeremy Hughes.
“That is something I have always given her credit for,” he said. “She plays on a great AAU team with a number of great players and she has always done that (get her teammates involved in the game).”
Taylor already owns school records for free throws made in a game (14) and career scoring average (16.8).
She is currently second in the MVL in steals, third in the conference in scoring and assists and at 5-foot-8 is the Trojans second leading rebounder at 5.9 per game.
When the game was stopped, Troy athletic director David Palmer presented her with the game ball and gave her a hug.
“That was the best,” Taylor said with a laugh about the hug from Palmer. She now stands at 1,005 points — second on Troy’s all-time list and just 125 points behind career leader Julia Reel-Niles.
“Definitely (that is the goal),” Taylor said. “I still have that newspaper article (from when she was younger) at home.”
Just the first of many in an already memorable basketball career.