Megan “Roo” Richardson-Johnson knows what it takes to win.
Richardson-Johnson, who was named Airline’s head softball coach Monday, was an All-American first baseman at the University of Texas-Tyler, where she helped the Lady Patriots win the American Southwest Conference and finish fifth in the World Series her senior year in 2009.
Last summer, she played professionally in Europe, helping her Swiss team, the Therwil Flyers, finish second in the European Cup.
After her collegiate career, Richardson-Johnson coached at Otero Junior College. For the past two seasons, she has been the head coach at Cushing High, a Class 1A school in Cushing, Texas. Cushing is located in the East Texas county of Nacogdoches.
According to MaxPreps.com, Cushing went 22-11 overall and 10-2 in district play last season.
Richardson-Johnson said several things attracted her to the Airline job.
One is that her husband Jeff is from Gibsland and has family that lives in Shreveport.
“Bossier is just a nice area, too,” she said. “I feel like it’s an up and coming area, right there around Airline. I think it’s got a great location to grow. And I think it’s going to be a really good program.”
Richardson-Johnson played with former Airline standout Rachel Howell at UT-Tyler and coached her for a year.
“She kind of gave me a background on Airline so I just felt it was a good program to step into, a huge program to step into from where I’m at,” she said.
Richardson-Johnson replaces Lynne Roberts, who was the sole head coach last season and co-head coach with her husband Danny in 2013.
Airline finished 15-12 last season and tied for second in District 1-5A. The Lady Vikings lost in the first round of the playoffs.
Richardson-Johnson said one of her goals is for Airline to consistently be a program that makes it to the state tournament.
She believes that hard work and mental toughness are two keys to doing that.
“Hard work is always going to pay off, but I think baseball and softball together are such a mental, mental, mental game,” she said. “You’re going to fail 70 percent of the time and you’re still considered really good so I’m a huge mental training person.”
Richardson-Johnson is eager to get started.
“I’m just super excited about the opportunity,” she said. “I’m super excited to be a part of the Airline family. I think they’re a close-knit group. And I think it’s going to be great for the community and the girls.”