Ruth Wright feels at home as the new Head Coach for Jourdanton softball.
Wright, a 30-year veteran in teaching and coaching, was unanimously approved by the Jourdanton ISD school board on Monday, June 14, to lead the Squaws on the diamond. She will also serve as an assistant coach for the volleyball team.
The Stephen F. Austin grad comes to Jourdanton after a two-year stretch at Livingston. Wright also coached at Huntington for 13 years, leading them to three state tournament appearances in 2007, 2008 and 2011, including a 3A state title in 2008. She also coached at Channelview in Houston and Marshall in East Texas.
Wright’s family lives in San Antonio and she was hoping she could come home for the 2020-2021 school year. When she heard about the opening in Jourdanton from her sister, Julie Goodman, she knew immediately it was the right fit and the perfect time to move closer to home. The collegiate national champion had coached in East Texas for the majority of her career.
“My heart told me to come home last year because my dad was sick and I needed to get home to the San Antonio area,” Wright said. “East Texas has been good to me and my family, but five hours [of driving] wasn’t cutting it. I couldn’t just get in the car and come home. [Julie] screenshot [the posting] and sent it to me. Immediately that night, it was a Tuesday, I got online and applied and sent it to coach [Darrell] Andrus.”
Andrus was impressed when he saw her resume and told her he’d be in touch. During Memorial Day Weekend, Wright, her fiancé Mark and her mother opted to take a road trip to Jourdanton from San Antonio to take a look at the facilities on their own. It just so happened that there was a playoff game being played at Jourdanton’s $1.5 million softball field. Wright got a chance to meet with Andrus during the game.
She left an impression on Andrus then before knocking her interview out of the park later the next week.
“We had a nice visit and I think [what stood out] was more of her energy and her personality and just her excitement for the game of softball, to help young student-athletes,” Andrus said. “It was more of the personal conversation we had prior to interviewing. When we got to the interview, I feel her resume spoke for itself.”
It’s no secret that Wright knows the game of softball. She helped SFA to the Division II national championship in 1986 and served as a graduate assistant for her alma mater in addition to her success at Huntington. Her two daughters, Ashley and Erica, went on to play softball collegiately at Texas State and the University of Texas, respectively.
She hopes her background will help her re-lay a winning foundation at Jourdanton after the Squaws missed the playoffs in 2021.
“We have to start out with a realistic goal. To me, we go in and get better each year and grow,” Wright said. “That’s what we did in Huntington and those were my best years. When I got to Huntington, they had heard great things about me, that I played and coached at SFA and my daughters were really good. The talk was that we were going to state. No, there’s a process and in that process, you have to build and you have to engrain in your student-athletes to expect to win.”