Mark Krulish | Kitsap News Group
Xavier Eaglin was a three-time state-placer for South Kitsap at the Mat Classic and won a title as a freshman in 2018, the first SK ninth grader to do so. Eaglin finished his senior year with an undefeated record and an SPSL championship.

Mark Krulish | Kitsap News Group Xavier Eaglin was a three-time state-placer for South Kitsap at the Mat Classic and won a title as a freshman in 2018, the first SK ninth grader to do so. Eaglin finished his senior year with an undefeated record and an SPSL championship.

Port Orchard Independent Male Athlete of the Year: Xavier Eaglin

When the COVID-19 pandemic shut down high school sports, young athletes everywhere began thinking about what their life would be like beyond sports.

Heading into his senior season, Xavier Eaglin wasn’t sure if he wanted to continue wrestling at the college level. He’s a three-time state placer — and likely would have been a four-time placer at the Mat Classic had he been given the opportunity — and a state champion.

But athletics at the collegiate level is a huge commitment — one he wasn’t sure he was ready to make.

“At first it was a ‘yes,’ because my body hasn’t been 100%,” Eaglin said. “I don’t know if I was ready to take on that commitment to college wrestling.”

But once restrictions lifted and Eaglin got back into the flow of things, there’s a chance he may end up having a change of heart after all.

“Now that I’m getting back into it, maybe I’d like to wrestle in college,” Eaglin said.

Eaglin was successful in all facets of school life in his senior year. He finished up an undefeated campaign with a South Puget Sound League title at 160 pounds and wrapped up his academic career with a 3.99 grade-point average, making him one of the school’s salutatorians. He was the recipient of the $4,000 scholarship from the Maynard Lundberg Education Association and is the Port Orchard Independent’s Male Athlete of the Year for 2021.

Eaglin burst onto the wrestling scene in the 2017-2018 season, becoming the first South Kitsap freshman in school history to win a state wrestling title. Wrestling then at 106 pounds, Eaglin was a surprise champion since he was not the top-ranked wrestler in the bracket, but he knocked off Chase Randall of Mead 9-8 in the 106 finals.

It was a big win for the Wolves, too. Mead was the runner-up and South Kitsap won the 4A team championship. Eaglin finished that year with a 42-5 record.

The successes on the mat continued as he finished fifth at 126 the next year and then reached the 138 finals as a junior, taking home second after a 5-2 loss to Robby Vaughn of Chiawana.

As a senior, he was up to 160 and cruised through the regular season and then pinned all comers at the SPSL championships earlier this month. Instead of ending the season at the Tacoma Dome with an unfamiliar opponent, Eaglin’s career ended with a technical fall victory over his own teammate at the Washington State Fairgrounds.

Eaglin will attend the University of North Dakota next year but plans to apply to the Air Force Academy, which has its own wrestling program. He said he’s going to keep his options open and consider wrestling again if his body feels good.

“I think I will miss it,” Eaglin said.

Past Independent Male Athlete of the Year recipients:

2020: Deyondre Davis

2019: Deyondre Davis

2018: Mason Eaglin

2017: Nolan Van Amen

2016: Albert MacArthur

2015: Marshaud Dewalt

2014: Logan Knowles

2013: Bryce Broome

2012: Eddie Meisner

2011: Conner Hartmann

2010: Gordy Anderson

2009: Leon La Deaux

2008: Matt Foxworthy

2007: Renard Williams

2006: Brent Chriswell & Josiah Kipperberg

2005: Brent Chriswell

2004: Pat Kelly

Mark Krulish | Kitsap News Group
Xavier Eaglin was a three-time state-placer for South Kitsap at the Mat Classic and won a title as a freshman in 2018, the first SK ninth grader to do so. Eaglin finished his senior year with an undefeated record and an SPSL championship. 
Mark Krulish | Kitsap News Group
Xavier Eaglin was a three-time state-placer for South Kitsap at the Mat Classic and won a title as a freshman in 2018, the first SK ninth-grader to do so. Eaglin finished his senior year with an undefeated record and an SPSL championship.

Mark Krulish | Kitsap News Group Xavier Eaglin was a three-time state-placer for South Kitsap at the Mat Classic and won a title as a freshman in 2018, the first SK ninth grader to do so. Eaglin finished his senior year with an undefeated record and an SPSL championship. Mark Krulish | Kitsap News Group Xavier Eaglin was a three-time state-placer for South Kitsap at the Mat Classic and won a title as a freshman in 2018, the first SK ninth-grader to do so. Eaglin finished his senior year with an undefeated record and an SPSL championship.

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