Lancer baseball earns recognition

Reagan Lee | Banner | Matt Amrhein, junior business administration major and right-handed pitcher, delivers a strike in a game against Western Athletic Conference opponent Sacramento State University on march 30. Amrhein did not allow an earned run and struck out two batters in four innings of work.

Winning individual awards and honorable mentions, California Baptist University baseball is rolling in its first Division I season with a 20-12 record at publication time.

The team has two Western Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Week Honors this season.

Travis Booth and Angel Deglado,  both graduate criminal justice majors, have both won the award. The Lancers also received votes in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association’s Top-30 poll.

The NCBWA recognition came in the organization’s Feb. 25 poll, where CBU and New Mexico State University were the only WAC programs ranked in the poll.

“The notoriety we have gotten early with the quick start has been rewarding,” said Gary Adcock, head coach of the baseball team. “But our players are focused on the long haul, not the short term and trying to make a statement in  this first year in DI, whether that be as an individual or a group.”

The Lancers opened conference play by winning their first-ever WAC series two games to one over preseason conference favorite Grand Canyon University.

The Lancers have played two ranked opponents, taking one game in a three-game series against then No. 25 University of California Santa Barbara, and falling to No. 5 Arizona State University.

Kyle Oyama, senior business administration major, said while the team is doing well there is still more to this season.

“So far we’ve been playing well and off to a solid start in conference, but there is still a lot of season left,” Oyama said. “If we stay focused and stick to the game plan that the coaches give us, we are going to be just fine.”

The current state of the team is good, but Adcock said there are still loose ends, such as giving up too many walks, hit batters or errors, that need to be tightened.

“Most, if not all of our losses have had too many free bases coupled with lack of offensive production, especially with runners in scoring position,” Adcock said. “Therefore, that has been our focus of late.”

Being its first year in the WAC, the baseball team has had a remarkable season, Oyama said, and is on track for the goal.

“(The) team goals this year are to put our name on the map and to win the WAC title,” Oyama said.

While the goal is always the top, Adcock said if they can prepare and compete to the best of their abilities consistently then they can live with any result.   

The team is currently ranked No. 4 in the conference standings with a record of 5-4. The last game of the Lancer’s inaugural DI season will be on May 18 in Las Cures, N.M. They will compete against New Mexico State.

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