When a shoulder injury cut her career as a catcher on Virginia’s Liberty University softball team short, Tracey Lynch figured she’d find a job in education. But then, after her surgery and a long process of rehabilitation, the Competitive Edge International softball team invited her to take the field as its starting catcher.

She couldn’t grab her mitt fast enough. That’s when she knew she wasn’t ready to give up the sport she loved so much.

“I wanted to be able to be outside of a classroom,” says Lynch, who traveled with the team to China to challenge the Chinese Olympic and national teams. “I wanted to be able to do something that I was passionate about every single day.”

That’s when she knew she wanted to get into coaching.

And that’s just what she did, landing her first job as an assistant coach at Long Island University in Brookville, New York. Although she mainly worked with the pitchers and catchers, she also spent a lot of time helping with everything from outfield drills to strength and conditioning.

A couple of years later, she came to the College of Charleston as a pitching coach and helped lead the Cougars to 37 wins and a second-place finish in the Southern Conference regular-season standings for the 2013 season.

After a year, however, Lynch left CofC for an assistant coaching position at Stony Brook University on the North Shore of Long Island, New York. From there, she took a similar position at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, where she once again worked closely with the team’s pitchers and catchers. Over the next six years, UNC Greensboro teams dominated the Southern Conference, winning four regular-season championships and two tournament titles.

With Lynch’s coaching skills on full display, it was just a matter of time before she would be offered a job as head coach. That moment came on June 7, 2021, when the College threw her a pitch.

“Tracey really stood out to us during the interview process,” says Director of Athletics Matt Roberts. “Her track record as an elite pitching coach speaks for itself, and her vision, passion and overall commitment to excellence fits what we are looking for as the leader of our softball program.”

The moment she returned to the College campus, she felt energized and excited.

“I felt a sense of home,” says Lynch, who returned to the dugout this season as head coach and hopes to rebuild the program in the seasons to come. “I’m excited about the future of Charleston softball and looking forward to making it a household name again.”