A Fey Family Affair: Dr. JoAnn Fey paves the path for daughters’ track and field success
Dr. Fey, a 5X All-American at SMU, coaches daughters Morgan, a state champion, and Maddie, an eighth grader and rising star, in shot put and discus.
San Antonio – For one San Antonio area family, the discus and shot put track and field events have become a passed down tradition at the highest of levels. Dr. JoAnn Fey – a former All-American at SMU – has been coaching daughters Morgan and Maddie Fey who are already further along than she was at their ages. Dr. Fey, a San Antonio All-Star selection in both volleyball and basketball, picked up shot put and discus in the 10th grade. Morgan, a senior at Southwest High School, and Maddie, an eighth grader at McNair Middle School, both began those events in middle school.
“The best gift I can give them is to set them up in a place that’s better, you know, just better,” said Dr. Fey. “I think as parents what we always want for all of our kids is to be better than we were at whatever we did.”
Morgan has translated her mother’s desire into results: she surpassed her discus record of 131’ her sophomore year and continues to set personal bests – her current record is 150’4”. On March 6th, Morgan also beat her mother’s shot put record of 43’1” with a distance of 43’8”.
“It’s always been nice having somebody that knows what you’re going through and knows the struggle, knows the sport, knows what it’s like to be a thrower because it’s kind of like its own small world and community that nobody really knows about until you’re in it and it’s like everything makes sense,” Morgan said.
As the defending 5A girls’ discus state champ, Morgan is ranked in the top five in the state and the top 10 both nationally and internationally. She is also the school’s valedictorian and has a full athletic scholarship to attend Rice University.
“You can never be satisfied with shot pot and discuss,” she said. “There’s not a maximum amount of – There’s never a level you can reach that is good enough. You can always throw further or be stronger or there’s always a step further or another level or something more you can do to be better at what you’re doing. And I think that’s something good to carry out through all aspects of my life.
Morgan’s younger sister Maddie, who practices with her sister and is also coached by her mother, said that Morgan has helped coach and push her to get better. She’s also beaten Morgan’s middle school marks in both discus and shot put and has her goals set on Morgan’s high school records.
“I don’t think you can fill someone else’s shoes,” Maddie said. “I think you can surpass what someone else has done but you’ll never replace someone, what they’ve done. I’ll maybe surpass what she’s done but her legend will always be there.”
As both a coach and mom, Dr. Fey has been able to witness firsthand her daughters improve and develop a growing love of a niche sport.
“I get how special it is that I get to share something that is almost so private as a female shot putter,” she said. “Nothing will ever compare to coaching them in something that is so unique that nobody else can understand.”
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