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Softball Coaching Staff

Published or Revised January 25, 2024

Head Coach Shelby Shelton

Shelby Shelton Photo

Shelby Shelton

Shelby Shelton is entering her fourth season as the head softball coach at Paris Junior College. Under Shelton’s guidance in 2023, the program had a record high 10 all-conference honors, including Player of the Year and Pitcher of the Year, as the Dragons finished second in the conference.

The program reached new heights in 2022 by advancing to the National Tournament and finishing top sixth in the country. The team was also recognized with the Sportsmanship Award at the national tournament. Shelton led the team to set the new program single season win record at 39 while also receiving the program’s first ever NJCAA national ranking. In the classroom, the team finished second in the country with a program high 3.79 team GPA. As a product of the team success, Shelton received Mid-South B Coach of the Year honors.

Prior to coming to PJC, Shelton spent a year as an assistant at Louisiana Tech University where she worked primarily with the infielders. Shelton previously served as assistant coach at Howard College in Big Spring, Texas where she was named the 2018 National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) National Junior College Assistant Coach of the Year. During her four seasons with the Hawks, she helped guide the program to 174 wins, four straight conference titles, four consecutive regional championships, as well as four trips to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) tournament. In 2018 and 2019, the Howard coaching staff earned NFCA D1 West Region Coaching Staff of the Year honors.

During her four-year stint at Howard, 19 players received scholarships to play at universities, five of them D1. She has coached numerous All-Americans, including the 2019 NFCA Junior College Player of the Year Amanda Gonzalez. Shelton also played a role in helping the softball team lead the athletic department in team GPA in 2016, 2017, and 2019.

Shelton started her collegiate playing career at Howard College (2011-13) where she was a member of the 2012 NJCAA Region V West Champions that finished ninth in the national tournament. The 2013 team won the Western Junior College Athletic Conference championship and compiled 53 victories.

Shelton spent her final two years at the University of Texas - Tyler (2013-15). During that time, she helped lead the program to a pair of American Southwest Conference titles, one regional championship and one super regional championship. She led the program to the national tournament in Salem, Virginia, as a senior – a team that made school history by finishing as the national runner up with a 50-5 mark.

She was a four-time All-Conference selection and made numerous All-Region and All-Tournament teams on the field. She was an NFCA All-American Scholar Athlete and a member of her league’s All-Academic team.

Shelton graduated from UT-Tyler with a bachelor's degree in kinesiology and has a master’s degree in health, kinesiology and sports studies with athletic administration concentration from Texas A&M University-Commerce. She is originally from Hughes Springs, Texas, where her parents still reside, and she has two brothers who played collegiate baseball at the JUCO and D1 level.

Assistant Coach Taylor Swisher

Taylor Swisher Photo

Taylor Swisher

Coach Taylor Swisher is in his first year as assistant softball coach at Paris Junior College, coming to PJC after two years at Vernon College. At Vernon he worked with hitters and infielders, while running the strength and conditioning program for the softball team as well as recruiting.

After his first season in Vernon, Swisher helped improve the offense in increasing the key main team statistics: batting average, on base percentage, slugging percentage, home runs, runs batted in, triples, hits, and walks. Academically, he had eleven players earn a 4.0 GPA, and both years the team had finished with a GPA higher than a 3.2. While at Vernon, six of his players were named to the All-Conference team.

Swisher's first coaching job was assistant softball coach at Clarendon College. There he worked with hitters and infielders, leading Clarendon to a third place finish in the Western Junior College Athletic Conference (WJCAC) in 2021. Under his leadership, Clarendon had the best defense in NJCAA D1 Region 5 with the top fielding percentage each year, and ranked eighth and twelfth in all of NJCAA D1, respectively. He also coached three players to the All-Conference team. Swisher’s other responsibilities included recruiting, running the strength and conditioning program, overseeing the academic development of the softball team, and doing all of the field maintenance.

Swisher graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA) in 2018 with a degree in Kinesiology with a minor in Nutrition. While at SFA, Swisher worked for the softball team for two years as a team manager. In that role, he was in charge of all field maintenance and team equipment, organizing team video and analysis, and also assisted coaches with practice. SFA reached the conference tournament each year he was on staff, finishing third in the conference tournament in 2016.

Jack Butler

Jack Butler Photo

Jack Butler

Jack Butler (Mr. Jack) returns to PJC for his 20th year assisting with the Lady Dragons. He is a staple of our program. He works diligently on field maintenance and keeps all of our team stats. He is a graduate of the University of Kentucky, where he played softball. While in the military, he coached baseball with the 1st Infantry Division of the United States Army.