Retiring the racket: Logan Morrissey begins coaching journey at Washburn

With foresight and leadership: Graduate Assistant Logan Morrissey surveys warmup at practice on Oct. 7, 2021. Morrissey finished her playing eligibility at Washburn with a school wins record.

Washburn tennis gets to retain graduated school record-holder Logan Morrissey as a graduate assistant coach for the foreseeable future, significantly thanks to COVID-19.

The lockdowns associated with 2020 hailed a time of reflection and planning in our lives. We all know someone who’s made a career decision or relocated because of the situation. Morrissey was posed with this scenario: forgo senior year on the court, or enroll into a graduate program.

As the world’s recovery out of COVID-19 began to come into focus, Morrissey chose the latter and devoted the rest of her tennis eligibility for Washburn while pursuing a master’s degree in Criminal Justice. Before the schedule disruption, extending her education at Washburn and the graduate assistant coach role weren’t being considered in her mind.

“It didn’t even honestly cross my mind before COVID-19 happened. In February [2020], tennis got cut short and I wasn’t really sure what I was going to do with my life at that point. It all kind of just worked out,” said Morrissey.

In her tennis career at Washburn, which spanned from 2016-21, Morrissey collected 69 singles match victories and a program-high 93 doubles victories. That prowess on the court and the freshness of her experience within the program have helped in her coaching journey.

“Since she just graduated, she has a much better understanding of some of the unique stressors the girls face on a daily basis, and what they deal with. It’s a lot more fresh in her mind,” said Head Coach Kirby Ronning, who coached Morrissey for the 2020-21 season. “I think she’s able to see things from both lenses, and really understand the player’s perspective after having me as a coach for one year, but also being on the coaches’ side of things and seeing the other reasons for why we’re doing things a certain way.”

Morrissey, a Lee’s Summit, MO native, will work with both the men’s and women’s teams for the 2021-22 season, which begins individual matches on Oct. 23, against Rockhurst University at the Washburn Tennis Complex.

Edited by Kyle Manthe and Ellie Walker