The first sport Sarah Richardson picked up on from a young age was softball and added soccer later on in middle school.

When her family and friends gathered in the library at Covington High on Monday to celebrate her signing a scholarship to play college ball, one would think she would continue her athletic career in softball because of her history with the sport. Wrong.

She signed a letter of intent Monday to play for former Covington coach Robert Luttrell at Dyersburg State on a soccer scholarship.


Traditions would view Richardson’s decision as surprising since a typical player would extend their athletic career with the sport they played their entire life, but her passion is what broke the standards.

“At first, I didn’t like it, but once I started to get a little better at it, I started to love it a little bit more,” she added.

This decision to choose soccer over softball was the best choice for her and Coach Rusty Ricardson, Sarah’s father, felt the same way.

“She made a great decision,” the four-year head coach said. “Coach Luttrell is a great coach. I have witnessed him taking the high school team to state twice and now the DSCC soccer team to the championship game this past season. DSCC is a great school.”

Ricardson’s high school resume stands out by being the starting goalkeeper all four years, made All-District team every year, was a two-time District Goalkeeper of the Year, and the leader in career saves (720) for girls’ soccer in Covington to top it off.

Along with her accolades, Luttrell offered her because of her versatile style from being able to excel in defending the goal to playing other roles on the field.

“I just feel blessed to be able to be able to have a player of her caliber.” Luttrell added.

Luttrell did not coach Ricardson in high school, but they still build a coach-player relationship through private lessons she took with him and having an established bond will help her adjust when she enters college.

David Perry
Author: David Perry