Baseball team ranked 12th in So. Cal. in first coaches poll

Baseball team ranked 12th in So. Cal. in first coaches poll

The first California Community College Baseball Coaches Association regional polls of the 2017 season came out this week and Irvine Valley, after an impressive start, is in the top 20.

The Lasers were picked 12th exactly.

Off to a 10-4 start after winning 5-4 over College of the Desert on Wednesday afternoon, Irvine Valley received 111 points.

Irvine Valley has captured four straight games and nine of its last 10 after its victory Wednesday.

Seven teams from the Orange Empire Conference are in the top 12.

Saddleback is first with Orange Coast second, Santa Ana third and Cypress fourth in the poll.

Palomar, which Irvine Valley has a win over this season, is fifth. The rest of the top 10 includes Glendale, LA Mission, Fullerton, Rio Hondo and El Camino.

Riverside is 11th and was 10 points ahead of Irvine Valley.

But the Lasers are in front of teams such as Long Beach City, Oxnard, Southwestern and Golden West.

Irvine Valley has a .304 team batting average, led by sophomore shortstop Tyler Odekirk, who is batting .458 with 27 hits, four doubles, two triples, 13 RBI, 21 runs scored and nine stolen bases.

Sophomore right fielder Cole Joy is batting .373, freshman outfielder Zack Stack is hitting .357 and freshman catcher Ryan Gaynor his batting .315 with a team-best 15 RBI.

The pitching has also been solid. IVC has a team ERA of 3.04. The staff is paced by sophomore Tyler Venturelli, who is 3-0 with one save and a 0.74 ERA in 24.1 innings pitched. Sophomore John Stevens with a 2-1 record and 2.25 ERA and sophomore Austin Reynolds with a 2-0 record and a 2.33 ERA have also been impressive so far.

Irvine Valley plays again on Thursday at San Diego Mesa. The team hosts Allan Hancock on Friday at 2 p.m.

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