Steve McClatchy was easily the most laid back coach I ever met.

And he was one of the best.

McClatchy died last Monday at the age of 65. 

A memorial service will be held at a later date.

McClatchy arrived at Huntington School in 1985 as an assistant coach after serving three yeas as an assistant coach at Trinity.

He did not have to have the guided tour after graduating from Huntington. McClatchy was a member of the 1971 Huntington football team that won a state championship.

I always enjoyed running into McClatchy out and about and talking for countless minutes about the past and present sports scene.

I never knew a challenge that McClatchy would not take on 100 percent. McClatchy was a man of many talents, coaching football, boys and girls basketball, softball and serving at athletic director at Huntington.

And it was no coincidence that success usually followed him wherever he went.

McClatchy led the Tensas girls basketball team to the state championship game in 2012 as the Lady Panthers lost to Louisiana New Tech (now New Living Word) in the finals.

Tensas reached the semifinals the year before and the quarterfinals the next two years.

In 1987, McClatchy led Huntington to a 7-4 record, falling to Claiborne 14-7 in the Louisiana Independent Schools Association semifinals.

Brad Daye was McClatchy's quarterback that season.

"Coach McClatchy was such a super nice guy," Daye said. "He was easy to be around and it was a pleasure to play for him."

Concordia Parish Chief Deputy and Sheriff-elect David Hedrick was also on that team.

"Coach McClatchy was a really good man," Hedrick said. "He got the best out of you without being over-demanding. He knew how to motivate his players."

McClatchy led Huntington's girls to the LISA Class A Final Four in 1987-88, finishing 21-10

Paul Glynn began coaching at Huntington in 1988.

"Coach McClatchy was good for me," Glynn said. "I was just getting started out and he took me under his wing. I helped coach an AAU team of girls from Waterproof, Ferriday and whistle-stop towns and we went to a tournament against some top teams such as the Lafayette Stars and Charlie Domino's teams which flew girls in and we went toe to toe with them. We ended up third in that prestigious tournament. When we got there I looked at Steve and asked, 'What are we doing here?.' But our girls did a great job. Everybody wanted to play hard for Steve. He meant the world to me."

Despite recent health issues, Steve McClatchy continued doing what he does best teaching and coaching.

Concordia Parish Academy principal Nancy Anders hired McClatchy about five years ago and he was over physical education until he retired two years ago.

"You could not have asked for a better employee," Anders said. "He took P.E. so serious. He did an awesome job with the the kids. He would be there early in the morning to help the kids out of their cars. And he would hang around until they were all gone, allowing a lot of us to go home. He was a special person and he is truly missed."

Indeed. 

 

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