The Student News Site of Sunny Hills High School

The Accolade

The Student News Site of Sunny Hills High School

The Accolade

The Student News Site of Sunny Hills High School

The Accolade

BASEBALL PREVIEW: Through practices during off-season, Lancers look forward to stronger performance

Pitcher+and+outfielder+senior+Rylan+Morris+pitch+the+ball+during+the+team%E2%80%99s+practice+after+school+on+Monday%2C+March+25%2C+after+school+at+the+Sunny+Hills+baseball+field.+%0A
Asaph Li
Pitcher and outfielder senior Rylan Morris pitch the ball during the team’s practice after school on Monday, March 25, after school at the Sunny Hills baseball field.

Coaches: Christopher Vogt (head coach), Randy Avalos (assistant coach), Turner Buis (assistant coach), Dylan Kuhn (assistant coach), Aaron Pak (assistant coach)

Top Returning Players: Brayden Chen (12), Lex Hou (12), Nolan Jackson (12), Cameron Loh (12), Peter Mellana (12), Rylan Morris (12), Tyler Simkins (12), Noah Yi (12)

Top Newcomers: Dylan Erickson (10), Zayyir Miramontes (10)

Last Season: The Lancers ended their season with a 5-5 record (11-10 overall) after losing their last Freeway League game against Troy. 

Outlook: With a majority of the team being seniors, the players hope to become league champions and make a deep run in CIF playoffs. 

During the off season, catcher Jackson said the team worked to improve on their weaknesses from the 2022-2023 school year.

“Our defense last year was a little shaky and lost us in some big games, but we spent the whole summer and fall trying to put it all together,” the co-captain said. 

To prepare for the upcoming games, Chen, Loh, Mellana, Morris and Simkins played with the Orange County Premier Baseball club over the summer while the others practiced on different teams through travel ball. 

Third baseman Loh said the team has other areas it needs to work on.

“Being consistent and coming through in clutch situations is something we’re trying to work on right now, too,” the senior said. “We definitely have seen improvements over the past couple months, and that’s something we’re just working toward.” 

Coming into his second year as the team’s head coach, Vogt said he feels more comfortable to give direct feedback to the players.

“I just got hired right before last year so this year, the kids know me better, and I know them better,” he said. “We bunt a lot, so we have to improve on that, and I want them to continue to learn how to compete.” 

Because of the senior-heavy squad, Loh said he has higher expectations for this season.

“Our goal is always to win league and make CIF, and especially with a lot of seniors, we just hope to come together as a team and have good chemistry because we’ve been playing together for a while,” he said. 

Jackson said the team has seen advancements in its offensive skill. 

“During preseason so far, we’re hitting and pitching really well,” he said. “We’re being super fine with our pitching, and we’re being really aggressive on the base pass.”

Co-captain outfielder Mellana said he looks forward to a strong season, both as a team and as a captain. 

“I hope that as a team we can get better as the season goes on and catch on fire right as league starts, and I hope I can be a good role model for the younger guys on the team,” the senior said. 

The Lancers, who ended non-league play with a 7-7-2 record, won their Freeway League opener in a home game against the Sonora Raiders, shutting them out 5-0 on Tuesday, March 26. They will next play tomorrow against the Sonora Raiders in an away game at Sonora High School at 3:30 p.m.

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Angelina Jeong, Sports Editor
Junior Angelina Jeong enters her first year on The Accolade staff after learning the fundamentals of journalism in the Journalism 1 class last year. Alongside co-sports editor junior Christine Yoo, she looks forward to publishing more stories for the sports section that will continue the award-winning legacy of The Accolade. Her goal as an editor this year is to improve her writing and layout skills to entice more students into taking an interest in the publication. Outside of The Accolade, Jeong can be found volunteering for her club or going on walks with her dog. 
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