When Megan Landry graduated from Central Catholic of Morgan City, she had multiple opportunities to play at the next level.
But she chose Nicholls, despite her parents telling her to look heavily into other, more historically successful programs that were on her radar.
Why? Landry said she doesn’t have a clear answer, adding that it was just somewhat of a gut feeling. She said she just had it in her heart that Thibodaux was the place she needed to be to continue her career.
“Something just kept pulling me there,” she said.
Turns out, her heart was right, because oh my, what a career she had while wearing the red and white.
Landry looked back on her magical collegiate career this weekend, telling The Times that the decision to commit to Nicholls was one of the best decisions of her life.
While at Nicholls, the Colonels evolved from a historically challenged program to an annual contender. And in the circle, Landry blossomed as well, establishing herself as one of the best pitchers in the history of the program — the Colonels’ all-time leader in strikeouts and several other individual honors, including two-times being All-Southland Conference First Team and also the honor of being the 2018 Southland Conference Pitcher of the Year.
“It was so much better than anything I could have ever dreamed of,” Landry said. “I’m just so grateful to have played for the coaches I played for and the teammates I shared the field with. The past four years were nothing short of amazing. Truly, I can say my decision to be a Colonel is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, because my collegiate experience was amazing.”
Landry said one of the biggest reasons for Nicholls; program turnaround in on-field chemistry. She said Nicholls’ 2019 team was one of the closest-knit groups she’s ever been part of — a team that studied together, went to church together and hung out away from the diamond.
That camaraderie helped the team push to a 34-22 record and a 21-6 mark in the Southland Conference, despite having to endure several rain-outs, which imbalanced the team’s schedule.
“We’re all competitive, but we were just all in it together,” Landry said. “There was none of this, ‘Well, I’m mad at you because you start over me,’ or ‘I don’t like you because you play more than I do.’ Everyone was united. The girls on the bench rooted us on. The girls on the field left it all out on the field. And there’s really nothing like when you’re part of that true team where everyone is pulling in the same direction and wanting the best for everyone else. It was so special to be part of.”
In the 2019 season, Landry achieved individual success, posting a 27-12 record with a 1.62 ERA in 250 innings.
She broke the strikeouts eclipsed 500 strikeouts during the year and also broke the Colonels’ all-time wins record.
Landry said the records were nice, but added quickly that she never knew where she stood on any of those totem poles until after they were reached.
“I was always the last to know,” she said with a laugh. “I had no idea.”
At the end of the season, Landry said it was hard to finish as the Southland Conference runner-up — two wins shy of the team’s goal of making the NCAA Tournament.
But a devout Catholic, Landry said she turned the pain into a life lesson. She said finishing second “sucks”, adding that she never wanted to experience that feeling again — especially not in her life’s quest to live righteously through God’s word and chase eternal life in heaven.
“I just thought about what it would feel like to finish second in the race to get to heaven,” Landry said. “And I said to myself, ‘This is a feeling I’m never going to experience again.’”
And she’s backing up that statement with action — working hard to impact the lives of others.
Landry will soon be moving to Norman, Oklahoma to serve as a FOCUS missionary at the University of Oklahoma.
There, she will be working with the university’s student-athletes to teach them righteous ways and help support them on their path as student-athletes, then also as husbands, wives, fathers and mothers.
Landry said being a FOCUS missionary is something she’s always wanted to do, adding that she can’t wait to get to work in Oklahoma.
“It’s a blessing,” Landry said. “I can’t wait to get started.”