NAIA West Grouping: 2018 Preview

derekcorban ccorban team

Corban University – Salem, OR

Head Coach Derek Legg (1st year)
Assistants Caleb Virtue, Dave Legg, Jacob Kopra, Jackson Smith, Thomas Kerr
Affiliation NAIA
Conference NAIA West Grouping
2017 Record 14-31 overall, 8-24 (5th in conference)
Top Returning Players Rilyn Lewchuk, Senior, RHP (1.92 ERA, top in conference, 11 starts)
Kris Jackson, Senior, RHP (2.72 ERA, 5th in conference, 3 wins)
Drew Loera, Senior, 1B (.254, lead team in RBIs)
Josh Ebert, Sophomore, INF (.289, 16 SBs top in conference)
Top New Players Dakota Fingar, Freshman, Okanogan HS (WA)
Maxwell Jeffrey, Freshman, Ferndale HS (WA)
Jacob Bowser, RHP, transfer from Skagit Valley CC (WA)
Head Coach Commentary My staff and I are really excited to get the 2018 season underway. The boys have really worked hard to prepare themselves both mentally and physically for the year. Since the first day of fall, our players really bought into the big picture and I am really excited to get out there and go to battle with them. Our challenging non-conference schedule will give us some good feedback as we prepare for the always tough NAIA West conference. Go Warriors!
BBNW Analysis The Warriors return more than ¾ of the pitchers’ innings from last year’s solid staff. It is a senior laden pitching staff with a lot of experience. The staff is led by Rilyn Lewchuk who was 5th in the country in ERA. New center of the diamond defense (catching, middle infield, center field) needs to step up big for Corban to contend in as good a NAIA conference in the country as any. Above average team speed should be an asset. Coach Legg is a former All-Conference Warrior player and a two year assistant coach. 2018 home games will be played at Volcanoes Stadium in Keizer, OR.
BBNW Alumni on the Roster 19

hum yotes logoyotes

College of Idaho – Caldwell, ID

Head Coach Shawn Humberger (18 years)
Assistants Brian Schweiger, Todd Barsanti, Bobby Wright, Izaac Garsez
Affiliation NAIA
Conference NAIA West Grouping
2017 Record 25-30 overall, 14-18, wont West Grouping tournament to advance to NAIA National Tournament
Top Returning Players Dominic Conigliaro, Sophomore, 1B/LHP (.299, 60H, 24 RBI)
Austin Van Horne, Sophomore, UTL/RHP (.229, 47H, 28RBI, 5SB)
Niall Manning, Junior, RHP (4.18ERA, 6-2, 56IP, 41 strike-outs)
Miles Bigelow, Senior, RHP (5.15ERA, 57 2/3IP, 42 strike-outs)
Johnny Hyland, Senior, UTL (.254, 48H, 20RBI, 7SB)
Top New Players Hunter Boyd, RHP, Yakima Valley CC
Kole Lane, INF, Spokane Falls CC
Dylan Mansanarez, INF/OF, Treasure Valley CC
Tate Spivey, INF/OF, Blue Mountain CC
Chase Labbe, C, Blue Mountain CC
KJ Strickland, 1B/RHP, Linn Benton CC
Head Coach Commentary “We lost the majority of a pitching staff and our middle infield combination that helped lead us to two consecutive NAIA National Tournaments. We are excited to see if our returners and new recruits can fill the voids and lead us back to the tournament and give us a chance to ultimately compete in another NAIA World Series.”
BBNW Analysis The Coyotes are coming off their 2nd straight NAIA National Tournament Opening Round appearance, the 4th in the last 8 years. They are the defending NAIA West Grouping conference tournament champion. Coach Humberger won his 500th game this past season and should become C of I’s winningest coach in school history this season. There will be a lot of new faces for 2018 hoping to continue the strong tradition of success. The Yotes lost four All-Conference players, two of those to the MLB draft. C of I is traditionally good fundamentally. They ranked 7th in the nation in fielding percentage last year. Conigliaro is coming off a 60 hit freshman season and looks to be an anchor to the offense. Manning and Bigelow must step up to provide key innings on the mound.
BBNW Alumni on Roster  12

robbinslc state lc state 2

Lewis-Clark State College – Lewiston, ID

Head Coach Jeremiah Robbins (6 years)
Assistants Allen Balmer, Billy Silvestri, Anthony Balderas
Affiliation NAIA
Conference NAIA West Grouping
2017 Record 40-14 overall, 22-8 (1st in conference)
Top Returning Players Rian Bassett, Senior, RHP (2-1 in 9 appearances, 35 2/3IP, 30K’s)
Gage Burland, Senior, RHP (5.49ERA, 19 2/3IP and 20K’s with 6 appearances)
Raymond Pedrina, Senior, OF, All-Conference (.303, led conference in runs, 3rd in conference in RBIs and hits)
Tyler McDowell, Senior, INF (.229, 16H with 6 doubles and 2 home-runs)
Top New Players Riley Way, SS/2B, Lewiston HS (ID)
AJ Davis, INF, Clarkston HS (WA)
Darren Trainor, C/INF, Merced College
Kody Garvin, OF, College of Southern Idaho
Head Coach Commentary “We are very excited about the upcoming season.”
BBNW Analysis The Warriors are coming off their third straight national championship and ranked again #1 in the pre-season polls. Coach Robbins has the program back to national dominance as LC State now has 19 national championships to its name. In Robbins’ first two years at the helm, the Warriors finished second in the national tournament. The Warriors put 8 players in professional baseball in 2017, the most of any Northwest college. They will rely on a large group of new players on the roster in 2018. Multi-talented leadoff hitter Raymond Pedrina returns to ignite a usually potent offense. The team was 7th  in the nation in home runs a year ago. Key season series’ on Warrior Field will be the conference opener beginning March 2nd vs. University of British Columbia and 12th ranked Georgia Gwinnett beginning March 6th. LCSC will again host the national tournament May 25-June 1. The NAIA, Lewis-Clark State, and the city of Lewiston host a great college baseball event, one which a Northwest baseball fan should experience.
BBNW Alumni on Roster TBD

milesoit logooit action

Oregon Institute of Technology – Klamath Falls, OR

Head Coach Matt Miles (11 years)
Assistants Phil Ouellette, Michael McCall
Affiliation NAIA
Conference NAIA West Grouping
2017 Record 18-29 overall, 13-17 (3rd in conference)
Top Returning Players Kai Fong, Junior, 2B, All-Region (2nd in conference for SBs)
Doug Molzahn, Senior, RHP, All-Region (2.89 ERA, 5 wins)
Alex Poltz, Senior, DH, All-Region (.319)
Austin Zavala, Junior, C, led region in throwing out base runners
Top New Players Micah Jio, INF, Freshman, Maui HS (HI)
Chase Wago, SP, Freshman, Ewa Beach HS (HI)
Logan Nousen, RHP, Southwestern Oregon CC
Justin Jordan, OF, La Sierra University
Head Coach Commentary “Roster has added depth across the board which increases team’s offensive ability and speed while adding key contributors on the mound. The elite work ethic of this roster should be the catalyst to take the next step to greater success. Seven freshmen have earned roles on the roster with the addition of 5 JC transfers that will be consistently in the lineup.”
BBNW Analysis OIT returned to the post-season in 2017 after a 4 year absence. The Wolves played inspired baseball last season and rallied around Coach Miles’ battle with cancer. A small solid core returns but 2018 success will depend largely on a good group of new freshman and JC transfers. The depth of the roster looks to be improved and will help to compete in as good an NAIA conference as in the country. Coach Miles achieved his 200th career win in 2017. 19 pre-conference games in California precede the conference opener on March 3rd vs. College of Idaho. A key conference series follows on March 17th when Lewis-Clark State comes to town.
BBNW Alumni on Roster 10


University of British Columbia – Vancouver, BC

Head Coach Chris Pritchett (3 years)
Assistants Wayne Corness, Sammie Starr
Affiliation NAIA
Conference NAIA West Grouping
2017 Record 32-16 overall, 21-11 (2nd in conference)
Top Returning Players Mitchell Robinson, Senior, 3B, All Conference, (.369, 59H, 39RBI, 11 doubles, 2 triples, 4 home-runs)
Kyle McComb, Senior, SS, All Conference (.248, 36H)
Austen Butler, Sophomore, CF, (.333, 40H)
Niall Windeler – LHP (2.94 ERA in 13 appearances)
Top New Players Jake Lanferman (CF), Fort Hays State University
Head Coach Commentary “This year’s club features veteran position players and young starting pitching.   Keys to success will be how quickly the young starting pitching develops and if our hitters can step up and deliver with more consistency than they did a year ago.”
BBNW Analysis Coach Pritchett is a former Northwest Area Scout for the Boston Red Sox. Pitching and defense is always
a UBC strength. They led the conference in each last year and their 2.85 ERA was the best in the
country. Two returning All-Conference players in Robinson (led conference in hitting) and Butler
are as good as any in the league. The defense is led by conference Gold Glove winner Kyle
McComb at SS. LHP Niall Windeler posted a 2.94 ERA in 11 starts. Highlights to the 2018 schedule
are two Division 1 opponents in Seattle University and the University of San Diego. A key conference
matchup is April 6th and 7th in Vancouver with LC-State.