MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Sports

July 15, 2014

Hilldale assistant Frisby gets MHS baseball job

Nathan Frisby got a new job to go with a Bahamas vacation Tuesday.

Frisby, a Hilldale graduate who has served as an assistant coach there since 2009, became Muskogee’s new baseball coach when his hiring was approved by the Muskogee school board.

When he gets back from his trip, he’ll settle into a job in his own backyard — something that was seen as important in the hiring process — and one he has been at before, beginning his career as an assistant coach under then-head coach Mack Chambers in 2007 and 2008.

“That was very important, to have someone who wanted to be a part of the community and remain here,” Muskogee athletic director Garrett Davis said.

“Nate communicated to us during the interview process that this is where he wanted to be. He and his family live here. He wants to get involved with the little league program at Hatbox which is something we wanted and not only to get involved there, but to also get that program to be around our program, our boys, our coaches and our facilities.”

Frisby, who could not be reached for comment while on vacation, succeeds Jeremy Griffin, who took a job closer to his home in Tulsa as an assistant coach at Bixby in June. Frisby and Eufaula coach Victor Paden were finalists. Davis started his job here in June after serving as Eufaula’s athletic director.

“Victor did a good job at Eufaula. We got Nate and hopefully we’ll be able to surround him with a good staff and get things rolling,” Davis said.

Chambers, who on the staff at Broken Arrow, recommended Frisby — who he hired after Frisby finished his college playing days at Southeastern and at Bacone.

“I knew him when he played at Hilldale and followed him through college. He’s dependable, honest, trustworthy and committed,” Chambers said. “He was just starting out, but he was eager to learn. He wanted to go to clinics not just for the camaraderie but to listen and learn.

“He’s got a lot of energy he’ll bring to that job. It’s one you need to be there, to be able to juggle your family and be there at the facility.”

 Tony Horn Sr., who was on the search committee and whose older son played for Chambers and Frisby, was strongly in favor of the hire.

“I reached out to others in the community as well as some high school coaches to get their opinion about the Muskogee job, and they all feel that Nathan is better prepared for the Muskogee job than any head baseball coach we have had in the past 10 years,” he said. “I’m not saying he’s the best coach, but being a person who lives in Muskogee and knows the community and kids and has lots of high school coaching experience makes him the best candidate for the job.”

Frisby’s hire means Darren Riddle is now in a search for a baseball assistant. Riddle coached him as a player in 2000 and 2001.

“I’m happy for him. It’s a great hire for them,” Riddle said. “It’s like having two coaches in the dugout, so I’ll miss him. He studies the game. He’ll commit to that program.”

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