Pierce Pioneer

A family on the field

Duncan Stevenson / Courtesy Photo
Top – 35# (Lachlan Arford), 31# (Jason Sizemore), 27# (Balas Buckmaster), 33# (Spencer Howell), 23# (Anthony Hoopii-Tuionetoa), 9# (Jacob Hinkle), 13# (Clay Spacher).
Second row from the top – 27 # Balas Bukmaster, 22# (Cole Benson), 34# (Ashton Dulfer), 28# (Andrew Oasay), 15# (Chris Trisler), 17# (Trucker Stroup), 26# (Jamie Maples), 6# (Alex Sisley).
Third row from top – 8# (Nainoa Paragoso), 19# (Dominc Agron), 25# (Ryan Ancheta), 16# (Wyatt Ohlson), 11# (Kennedy Cook), 1# (Nathan Gelbrich), 3# (Hobie Mahon), 12# (Cody Isa).
Last row – 2# (Colby Tam), 7# (Cody Russell), 5# (Josiah Factora), 4# (Josiah Factora), 20# (Austin Eisenmenger), 10# (Tyler Fox), 24# (Brock Wrolstad), 14# (Rhys De Highden).

A Championship Culture and high aspirations for Pierce College Baseball

Last year, the Pierce College baseball team dominated conference play en route to the Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) Super Regionals. This year, they aim to put championship rings on their fingers when the season ends.

After finishing with an overall record of 26-23, and out matching conference opponents with a record of 17-8, this year’s group has the mix of veteran leadership, talented young players, and a bond amongst each other to take them to great heights.

Sophomore pitcher Brock Wrolstad touched on the goals of the team and what it takes to achieve them. Wrolstad is currently getting a general Associate in Arts degree and plans to further his baseball career beyond Pierce College, but has not decided where.

“Our goal is to win an NWAC Championship and to do that we need to play with confidence and for one another,” Wrolstad said. “We cannot go out playing selfish, we need to play as a family.”

The family culture the team carries is something they have built through relentless offseason preparation.

Sophomore pitcher Tyler Fox intends to major in sports management and further his baseball career as well. He is waiting until the season’s end to decide where. Fox knows how important the culture the team has created is to their success.

Duncan Stevenson / Courtesy Photo
“Play fast and relaxed and never give up on your teammates,” Tucker Stroup said.

“We have a culture of family and want to fight for each other every day,” Fox said. “We’ve been grinding for about seven months now and we all know we would go to battle for each other.”

The team’s family mindset pairs well with the high standards and goals players have individually.

For Fox, he wants to have an earned run average (ERA) under 2.00 and a batting average above .300. Wrolstad also wants to have an ERA under 2.00 and be named to first team all NWAC.

Sophomore pitcher Tucker Stroup also has the goal of having an ERA below 2.00. Stroup plans to get his Associate in Arts degree before transferring to a four year university to continue his baseball career. Stroup had other individual goals he brings whenever he’s on the mound.

“Play fast and relaxed and never give up on your teammates,” Stroup said. “Be consistent as a pitcher, throw strikes and throw with intent.”

For the Raiders offensively, a top returner at the plate is outfielder Nainoa Paragoso, who had a strong freshman campaign with a batting average of .325 while also wreaking havoc on the basepath with 12 stolen bases.

On the mound, Dominic Agron hopes to continue making an example of opposing batters as he did in his freshman season where he had a 2.44 ERA, 70 innings pitched, and 58 strikeouts; all second on the team.

For the freshman, there is definitely a bit of a transition from high school baseball into college, Fox said.

“In high school you kind of know if you’re going to play a lot,” Fox said. “But in college ball, you’re fighting for a spot in the lineup every single day.”

This far into the season, the Raiders are 6-10, but with the most important games ahead, the team will gear up to dominate the conference as they did last year.

pierce’s baseball team in championship game

Joseph Henrickson
Staff Writer

Courtesy photo from Duncan StevensonPierce College has been busy, with both the girls’ softball team and the boys’ baseball team entering the playoffs this past week.  The girls started off the tournament losing their first game to Spokane ten to three and tried to fight their way up through the loser’s bracket.

Following the loss, they played Highline Community College and won that game five to four and the next game against Columbia Basin by a score of nine to eight before getting eliminated in a loss to Bellevue Community College, six to one.

The girls will have to try for a championship again next year but finished the regular season in magnificent fashion to win the division and make the playoffs.

The baseball team has made their way through the loser’s bracket after being beat by Yakima Valley in their second game.  The first game against Linn-Benton resulted in a Raiders win by the score of seven to two.

Elliot Morris was the starter in game two. That usually means a guaranteed win for Pierce but that wasn’t the case this time.  Morris allowed a total of six runs [four earned] in the six to two loss that sent the Raiders into the loser’s bracket.

As of press time, the Raiders have beat Tacoma Community College three to one and faced Yakima Valley for a second time, beating them by a score of five to two.  Those wins have led Pierce College to play for their second straight NWAACC Championship, this year against Everett Community College.

The Raiders have to beat ECC twice to win the championship in the double elimination tournament but can be eliminated with just one more loss.  The championship game was supposed to start on Memorial Day but was postponed due to inclement weather in Longview, Washington and will not be played until Friday, May 31.

That’s great news for the Raiders as their two top pitchers will be well-rested and ready to go for both games.  Darien Moran and Elliot Morris will both have ample rest before facing off against Everett on Friday.

Everett has been one of the best teams this year, losing only three games in their conference and just nine games all season long.  Now they will have to face two of the toughest pitchers in the league.  Pierce has the toughest two games of the year coming up but there is a lot in their favor and they have a great shot at taking home their second NWAACC Championship in as many years.

In the one game that Pierce played against Everett this year they did not come away with a win.  Elliot Morris started the game and only allowed one run through six innings and handed the ball over to the bullpen.  The game went downhill after that as Everett scored a run in the seventh, three runs in the eighth and a whopping seven runs in the ninth to take the lead and win the game 12 to seven.  Pierce was ahead six to two going into the eighth inning and could not hold on.

Morris has gone into later innings during many games, and if he can keep his pitch count down the Raiders are fair bets to win.  Moran has been stellar as well and the left hander will definitely present some challenges to ECC’s lineup.  All things considered, Pierce College may have an addition to their trophy case next week.

Men’s basketball: defense and speed forecast

Men’s basketball is predicted to have a better game than last year in upcoming season

Glenn Dread
Staff Writer 

In the up-coming season the Pierce College Men’s Basketball team is gearing up for what the team hopes to be a better season and have plans to top last year’s disappointing season. One of the many assets the team has is its speed, though the team is considered to be a small squad, but their quickness should keep the points on the scoreboard.

This year’s squad has a host of new faces and only two returning players from last year, one of which is team captain, All Conference player John Palmer and the other Derek Porter. In addition the squad has added two players from Las Vegas Jerry Jacobs and Devin Matthews.

In an interview I did with Guard/Swingman Devin Mathews he says that their speed should force plenty of turnovers to open up their transition game. Another threat opponents may have to deal with the run and gun style of the new squad which is another advantage of having speed. Most teams will have a difficult time defending the team because they have exceptional shooters which will spread the floor and will increase scoring from the field.

Since this is new team one area they will have to work on is team chemistry, typically team chemistry takes time to gel-however, the fact that the team plays extremely unselfish ball will really help especially when they have to run a 4 guard set.

Another upside to this year’s team is ball control. According to starting point guard Jerry Jacobs his ability to get everyone involved and be a good ball distributor should bring the team great success. Mr. Jacobs also hopes that the will remain hungry by staying very competitive no matter what.

I asked both players whom they thought would be a threat on both sides of the ball and both players agree hands down that Tyrell Lewis is that dynamic player.  Mr. Lewis is approximately 6’7’’ but plays extremely big for an undersized forward/center.

His above the rim play should make him a hit with basketball fans and fellow collegiate players alike.

This year’s team is the one to watch, they have already won a tournament hosted here at Pierce College just last Friday, with their quickness, athleticism and high pressure defense the 2012 Men’s Basketball team will be more than just a game to see, but a spectacular journey to the championship.

Comments (0)

The Pioneer intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and must be approved by a moderator to ensure that they meet these standards. The Pioneer does not allow anonymous comments, and The Pioneer requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All Pierce Pioneer Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest