CBU softball coach Bill Baber and slugger London Miller interview with Pep Fernandez on The Inland_Sports Show on Fox Sports Radio 1350AM KTDD.
Check out some of the pictures from the press conference at UC Riverside to introduce Dylan Cavender to the baseball team. The Highlanders “adopted” Cavender as part of the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation.
According to a release from UCR: The Friends of Jaclyn Foundation’s mission is to improve the quality of life for children battling pediatric brain tumors and other childhood cancers, and to raise awareness through their “Adopt-A-Child,” “Safe on the Sidelines,” and “Guardian Angel” programs. They do this by pairing the afflicted child and their siblings with local high school and college sports teams, campus clubs, and arts programs in their community.
Cavender will share a locker with #8 Ian Nowak inside the UCR clubhouse.
Assistant coach Bryson LeBlanc was instrumental in helping connect the Highlanders baseball team with Cavender and the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation.
The Riverside Poly boys soccer team wrapped up the Inland Valley League championship with a 5-0 victory versus Canyon Springs.
Jesus Barriga netted four goals in the victory.
The Bears finish the regular season 17-3-3 overall, 8-0-2 in the IVL.
The Rancho Verde Mustangs held off Riverside Poly 37-29 in Inland Valley League play as the Mustangs improved to 8-0 in the IVL; the Bears dropped to 4-4. Check out the entire game broadcasted on the Riverside Poly Bears Broadcast Network:
Lancers Focused on This Year, This Team
By Cullen Holt
RIVERSIDE – Sitting in front of various members of the media at Cal Baptist Baseball Media Day, skipper Gary Adcock made it very clear that the previous season and the heartbreak that came with it were in the past. “We addressed last year and the disappointment of last year in our very first meeting, and then I said that’s where it’s gonna end. We’re not gonna address it. Were not gonna talk about it.”
CBU’s highly-successful 2016 campaign came to a close with a loss to Cal Poly Pomona in the final of the NCAA Division II West Regional Tournament. A win would have set up a rematch with Cal Poly and another win would have sent the Lancers to the Division II College World Series. Adding to the disappointment of losing was the fact that the Lancers let a four-run lead slip away and went on to fall short by just one run.
With the recent announcement that California Baptist will be making the transition to Division I starting in the 2018-2019 school year, questions about the future were inevitable.
While it would be easy to look back at the heartbreak of last season and look forward to the program being Division I next season, Adcock and his team are focused on success in the present. “We’re trying to navigate those waters of being a relevant, championship-driven Division Two team, but be able to make the smooth transition to Division One.” Adcock said, “I think we’ve done that.”
Adcock also said that his seniors were the first players he was focused on and that the younger and newer athletes would be recruited as part of the transition or inaugural team. CBU is also looking forward to the recruiting perks of being DI for building a team that can be successful at a higher level.
“It’s not that we were void of Division One players,” Adcock said about his team. “We just need more of them… We’ve gotta probably increase our depth first and foremost. The depth will be able to be increased with the scholarship increase right off the bat… Lack of maybe bullpen depth got to us a bit.”
Cal Baptist feels a sense of urgency to be successful given that, per NCAA rules, this will be their second-to-last season of postseason eligibility until the 2023 season. “Last year, we should have won,” outfielder Ryan Williams commented. “And that’s the approach we take with the younger guys to set them up for success.”
The Lancers enter this season ranked 14th in the nation for Division II in the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper’s Preseason Poll. This ranking is based more on the success of the CBU baseball program as a whole rather than the caliber of talent on the roster. This year’s Lancers have been, as Adcock put it, “gutted.”
Cal Baptist returns only two of nine starters for this season. And will start four freshmen in the infield in select games. However, considering the success CBU has had in the past, optimism still remains. Adcock says he will lean on the influx of freshman and transfer talent along with key returners Bryce Macy and Ryan Williams.
According to Adcock, Macy and Williams “were part-time players last year turned everyday players at the end of the season.” Together, they combined for 18 RBI’s in the regional tournament alone.
As always, the Lancers will rely on the guys on the mound to carry their team. Adcock said, “As long as I sit in the chair as a pitching coach who’s a head coach, the pitching is gonna drive the program.”
How is that going to play out considering CBU lost all but one of their starting pitchers from last year? Catcher Bryce Macy, who likely knows the rotation and bullpen better than anyone believes turnover won’t be an issue. “I feel like our pitching staff is going to be really good. We’ll pick up the slack that we lost from last year. I think we’ll pitch just fine this year.”
Lancer fans need their team to make a major statement before the transition period starts. Four years is a long time to wait for another postseason run.
The Cal Baptist University baseball team is coming off a record-setting season that included a program-best 42 victories, a PacWest Conference title and the opportunity to host the West Region tournament; the very first postseason tourney to be held at CBU.
The Lancers are preseason nationally ranked, but head coach Gary Adcock will need to replace many of his starting players from a season ago.
Check out some of the interviews from Media Day:
Head Coach Gary Adcock:
Outfielder Ryan Williams:
Catcher Bryce Macy:
Shortstop Aflredo Rodriguez: