Girl’s Basketball Holds on to Second Year Coach Kaynee McLeod


Lisa Parker

Lisa Parker takes official picture of Kaynee McLeod

Reagan Hall, Reporter

How much do you really know about the coaches at Fort Worth Country Day? Every year, this school sees a handful of new part-time coaches because, according to Athletic Director Leigh Block, the retention rate is so low. Well, girls basketball has landed a good one in second-year coach Kaynee McLeod.

McLeod was born in Fort Worth on April 27, 1997 to parents Angie and Dustin McLeod. She has a brother, Christian McLeod, who graduated from FWCD in 2010. She attended Fellowship Academy, and while she was there, she began playing basketball in fifth grade and fell in love. 

“I love the competitiveness, working as a team, and just how the game flows,” McLeod said.

After Fellowship Academy, McLeod later played at Southwestern Assemblies of God University, and finished getting her Bachelors in Exercise Science at the University of Texas at Arlington. After college, she coached a travel basketball team called Texas Express, and then she ended up at Country Day.

I wanted to get back into basketball so I started looking for part-time coaching positions. I saw the job opening here, and my brother is a Country Day grad, so I thought maybe it was a sign. I just went for it and applied and thankfully it worked out,” McLeod said. “I couldn’t have asked for a better experience my first year so of course I had to stay. The staff here are special, the kids here are special, and the support I have received over the past two seasons has been incredible.” 

Going into the 2021-2022 season, the program wanted someone who could coach both the middle and upper school teams. McLeod reached out and explained her interest to Block who set up an interview. 

“I usually let the head coaches take over after my pre-interview, so Shelley Rains, girls basketball program director, talked to her for a while and came to me to tell me she wanted McLeod on her staff,” Block said.

Block coached with her in the 2021-2022 winter season when the girls varsity team only had five players. There, he was able to see her coach at a high school level and got to know her better. When her schedule didn’t change for her primary job, he didn’t hesitate to keep her on the staff for another year.

“When you find someone who can work with younger kids, inexperienced kids, older kids, and experienced kids, then you want to try to bring those people on board and keep them,” Block said.

Rains saw something very important in McLeod: her love for the game. One of the biggest things Rains preaches is to love the game, and McLeod came to her, hungry to get back into the sport she loves, not to play, but to teach. 

“I really respected the fact that she wanted to get back into it and respected her enthusiasm every day,” Rains said.

Another thing that makes McLeod a great asset to have on the staff is her age. Having a younger coach is always good because it can create a better connection between them and their players.

“I do like the fact that she’s young, too, and more so to the players’ age than others. It makes her very relatable, but she does still know how to draw the line as their coach,” Rains said.

Point guard Kylie Carter ‘24 has gotten to learn from McLeod first-hand since they play the same position. Carter has learned a lot from the coach, both with the physical and mental parts of the game. 

“I like how encouraging and hardworking she is with us. She has helped me become more confident in my position and I am very grateful,” Carter said. 

McLeod has been a great addition to the Fort Worth Country Day girl’s basketball program for the past two years, and hopefully she chooses to continue at the School.