Abilene-Wylie Baseball has a long history of success with Coach Martin.
Wylie Coach Clay Martin has had a pretty incredible nine months.
This past June, he won his second consecutive state baseball championship and in the fall he was inducted into the Hardin-Simmons University Athletic Hall of Fame.
Then to top it off, in March he recorded his 600th win.
“I think the one thing that says is that I’m really old,” Martin jokes.
Martin recorded his 600th career victory during a tournament on his home field on March 2. He was presented with a home-plate shaped plaque to commemorate the occasion.
“It’s a neat deal,” Martin said of 600 wins. “I’ve been very fortunate to be around a lot of great players. There are a lot of guys that played a role in that. It’s an honor for Wylie baseball.”
Martin played his high school ball in Burkburnett before a fellow ballplayer talked him into coming to Hardin-Simmons University to play college ball.
“I had never even been to Abilene,” he said. “My first day in Abilene was the first day of orientation.”
He eventually became a grad assistant at HSU and then a full-time assistant coach. But he wanted to go somewhere that would allow him to coach baseball and football. He found that at North Mesquite, and coached there for a few years.
“I found out through a friend about the job opening at Wylie and came and interviewed,” he said. “It was just a great opportunity, and something I couldn’t pass up.”
That was the summer of 1993. Now, 25 years later, Coach Martin is very happy with that decision to come to Wylie.
“We’ve had a lot of success,” he said. “Coach (Hugh) Sandifer has been great to work for. It’s never been a job. I wake up every day and feel like I’m unbelievably blessed. I look forward to coming to work. That’s something that’s special about Wylie.”
Not only is Martin the head baseball coach, but he is also the defensive coordinator for the football team. He won a state championship with the football team in 2004.
He said he loves both sports.
“I enjoy doing both and always have,” he said. “It doesn’t really matter which season it is – just the opportunity to coach is important to me.”
In 2015, Martin led the baseball team to the state championship game but lost. Then in 2016, the team returned and won Wylie’s first-ever state baseball championship. In 2017, the team repeated as state champions.
“There’s so much that goes into that,” he said. “It’s something that’s super special.”
Martin said the induction into HSU’s Athletic Hall of Fame was a surprise.
“There’s a lot of great people and a lot of great athletes that have been inducted,” he said. “To be mentioned with that group – it was such an honor. It was something that was a big surprise and something that was really neat.”
Martin said he has made many great memories over his career. Getting to coach his three sons, including son Gatlin who is a senior this year, has been very special, as has the two baseball and one football state championships.
“The whole process and the work you put in is what makes is so special,” he said. “There’s only one team that gets to win their last game. It’s just an unbelievable feeling. It’s unbelievably hard to get to the state tournament. To win twice in a row is such a blessing.”