One of the most long-tenured high school softball coaches in the state of Louisiana was told she would not be retained despite a long track record of success, reaching the playoffs in 14 of her 16 seasons. The real head scratcher? No one is saying why she was let go, and she can’t figure it out for her life.
As reported by the Baton Rouge Advocate, longtime Live Oak High School (Watson, La.) softball coach Michelle Morris was relieved as the team’s coach after 16 seasons. An alum of the school who went on to compete collegiately at Mississippi College, Morris first re-joined over the program in 2003, as an assistant coach to her own former high school coach, Katherine Sims. After eight seasons as an assistant she became the head coach herself.
The 2019 campaign was a rough one for Live Oak, finishing 12-16, but that was the first losing season the program endured under Morris’ guidance. For her part, Morris can’t figure out what she did to justify the sudden and unanticipated change.
“I was told by my principal (Beth Jones) that I could tell people how I feel about this,” Morris told the Advocate. “I’m disappointed. This program is so special to me.
“I was taken aback by this. I was called in and told the school was going to move in different direction. We had our first losing season, and I know that was a factor. I thought there would be more time, and I would have the chance to turn things around.”
Instead, Morris was told the school needed a new leader and she needed a new challenge, despite her extensive DNA with the program, dating back to when her father helped found the school’s softball team.
“There comes a time where change is needed, and we felt like the time was now,” Live Oak athletic director Brett Beard told The Advocate. “I look forward to the next chapter of Live Oak softball.”