Loyalty and stability are two things longtime Issaquah Eagles wrestling head coach Kirk Hyatt cherishes.
Hyatt, who graduated from Issaquah High School in 1975, is currently in his 19th season as head coach of the Eagles wrestling program. He enjoys being fully immersed in the community.
“I live just two miles outside of town. I’ve lived there for the past 36 years,” Hyatt said with a smile. “Everybody knows me in town. I know a lot of families.”
Hyatt is completely comfortable on staying put for the long haul as the leader of the Eagles wrestling program.
“I just see too much complacency in coaching right now. Coaches will go somewhere and last two or three years before they want to move on. It is always about them,” Hyatt said of the constant movement in the coaching world. “I just got to the point where I just want the kids in the community to know they can count on somebody. That helps a lot especially if they know that you’ve always been here.”
Hyatt, who has been the Eagles head wrestling coach since the 2000-01 season, won the a KingCo title during his high school years in the 129-pound weight class in 1974. During the 4A KingCo tournament, Hyatt donned his old high school lettermen’s jacket from the 1970s during the 4A KingCo finals. The Eagles won the 4A KingCo tournament as a team by a significant margin. Mount Si finished in second place in the tournament. Hyatt is glad the jacket still fits four decades later.
“I bought it big back then,” Hyatt said with a laugh. “I started doing it because I told our team you got four years to wear your awards. I tell them to put all of their awards on their jackets.”
Hyatt is eagerly anticipating the Mat Classic Class 4A state tournament at the Tacoma Dome on Feb. 15-16.
“Every single year that I have coached we’ve had at least one Issaquah wrestler at the state tournament. One time we had eight go,” Hyatt said. “That is my goal every year to make sure Issaquah is represented at the Mat Classic. I have had 18 state placers and one state champion.”