The 2014 Sierra College baseball team will look to build off an impressive 2013 season in which they claimed the Big 8 Conference Championship. The Wolverines were the #1 ranked RPI team in Northern California last season. With 13 players either transferring to a 4-year school or drafted in the latest Major League Baseball Draft, Sierra College will look to only a couple returning starters to guide them in 2014.
Of those players, the Wolverines hope to be led on offense by returning 2nd Team Big 8 All-Conference shortstop Dustin Vaught and 2nd Team Big 8 All-Conference outfielder Dalton Blaser. Both players will contribute to the middle part of the line-up in the spring of 2014. With only two returning starters from last year’s line-up, the Wolverines will look for help from red-shirt freshmen Kyle Dixon, Stevin Cisneros, and true freshman Kyle Lewis, all of whom have showed the ability to compete everyday in the Wolverine’s style of offense.
Returning from ACL surgery is Brandon Flynton. The catching duties will be split between three players with limited college experience; Mike Moore, Max Magleby and Mike Phelan. Other recruits who the Wolverines hope produce as freshman are outfielders Josh Robinson, Evan Ramirez, Ethan Liddle and Jordan Weber.
The Wolverines will also be youthful on the mound, as the pitching staff is filled with freshman. Lost from 2013 is the entire starting rotation. Of the few sophomores returning on the mound, Sierra College is fortunate to have back 1st Team Big 8 All-Conference and All-Northern California relief pitcher Kea Vierra and 2nd Team Big 8 All-Conference relief pitcher Devon Golden. Both pitchers will play a pivotal role in the Wolverine pitching staff. True freshmen Tyler Milani and Wyatt D’Alessio have shown that they have the grittiness and composure to be considered reliable options in the Sierra College rotation. Division 1 bounce back Mason Magleby who played QB at the University of Nevada for three years and pitched one season at Sacramento State could be a key contributor to the Wolverines pitching staff.
The Sierra College baseball team is poised to compete in the Big 8 conference in 2014, which has been widely considered one of the toughest conferences not only in California, but also the entire country. Veteran leadership and talented freshmen must be present if the Wolverines plan to capture their 2nd consecutive Big 8 Conference Championship and an 11th straight state playoff berth in 2014.
In 2013 the Sierra College Wolverines baseball team achieved many great accomplishments including a Big 8 Conference Championship. The Wolverines finished the season with a 33-9 overall record; while being ranked #1 RPI in Northern California. Sierra compiled a 19-5 Big 8 Conference record. This conference record is extremely impressive as the Big 8 Conference is one of the toughest conferences in the country.
In 2013 the baseball team was 8-0 in ball games decided by 1 run; they compiled 4 walk-off wins as well. However, the 2013 Wolverines baseball team did not stop there. In the 2013 regional playoffs the #2 seeded Sierra College Wolverines faced the #15 seed College of Sequoias. Sierra won the first two games in the best of three series, and outscored the COS Giants 23 to 3 in those two wins.
Next Sierra hosted its first ever Super Regional, which goes to the top two seeds in Northern California. Sierra hosted Cabrillo College in the 1st game of this double elimination four team tournament. Sierra sent their ace to the mound in game 1, Andrew Cooper (Washington Nationals 12th Rounder) 13-1 on the season and were upset by a very good Cabrillo team. This put Sierra one game from elimination.
In Game 2 of the series Sierra faced Central Valley Conference Champion Fresno City College in a winner moves on, loser goes home game in Sacramento. Sophomore transfer from Oregon State Matt Fielding (UC Irvine) was great on the mound while red shirt freshman outfielder Sean Sundberg (Granite Bay High) led the offense with a bases clearing triple down the right field line propelling the Wolverines to a 4-1 victory sending them back to Sierra the same day to face the loser of the Feather River vs. Cabrillo winners bracket game.
Sierra had to play another elimination ball game. Sierra sent game 3 starter freshman Ryan Gearing (Oakmont) to the mound, however Gearing did not have his best stuff and was out after 2/3 of an inning. Sierra then opted for reliever Tanner McVey (Rocklin High) and Tanner was outstanding, pitching 8 1/3 scoreless innings. Sierra won the game 3-1 and moved on to the Super Regional Championship game Sunday vs. Feather River College.
FRC had to be beaten twice and Sierra failed to beat them in game one coming up just short from its 4th Final Four appearance in the past seven years. Sierra’s sophomore standouts in 2013 were Big 8 Player of the Year/All –American Infielder Nick Blaser (Cal State Northridge), 1st Team All-Conference/All-American Catcher Blake Grant-Parks (CSU Monterey Bay), Big 8 Pitcher of the Year/All-American Andrew Cooper (Washington Nationals), 1st Team Big 8 Conference Outfielder Jared Snow (CSU Monterey Bay), 1st Team Big 8 Conference Short Stop Jake Riffice (University of Iowa), and 2nd Team Big 8 Conference Pitcher Matt Fielding (UC Irvine). Sierra was also led by freshman Outfielder/1B Dalton Blaser, Infielder Dustin Vaught, and Pitchers Tanner McVey, Devon Golden, and Kea Vierra.
Another former Sierra College pitching standout, Eric Nedeljkovic, who led the University of Miami in saves this year, was drafted by the Colorado Rockies. He began his pro career this past summer.
Find out about all community college baseball at the California Community College Baseball Coaches Association web site. Sierra College's page with stats.
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