Baseball opens season ranked second in the nation
01.28.2017 | By Amanda Fenwick
HOUSTON – The San Jacinto College baseball team opens its 2017 campaign ranked second in the nation in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) baseball preseason rankings.
Yavapai College in Arizona takes the top spot in the season’s first poll, followed by San Jac, Iowa Western Community College, Chipola College (Florida) and Cowley County in Kansas.
“After a strong fall season we are ready to get out on the field,” said Head Coach Tom Arrington, who begins his 16th season at the helm of the San Jac baseball program. “We have a talented group of players and coaches who continue to work hard every day so that we can be successful on and off the field. We’re excited to get out there and play against some of the best teams in the country this year.”
San Jac opens the 2017 season this weekend at Tyler Junior College before heading to Florida for the Chipola College Alumni Bash where it will face host #4 Chipola College, Wallace Community College – Dothan, and #13 Walters State Community College. The team will open the home season with the San Jac Tournament of Champions Feb. 10-12, opening with Legends Night on Friday, Feb. 10 at 7 p.m., against Odessa College. The first 100 fans that night will receive a free baseball. San Jac rounds out the tournament against 10th-ranked Midland College, Northwest Florida State, Howard College and Grayson College.
“The Tournament of Champions and Legends Night are one of the highlights of our season,” said Arrington. “Our Legends honorees this year are Nick Stavinoha, Kyle VanHook, David Rollins and Daniel Stumpf, all of whom had success here at San Jac and went on to do great things in their professional careers. We hope to see a big crowd that night to honor these former players.”
The competitive Region XIV schedule kicks off at home Feb. 24 and 25 against Laredo Community College. Other conference home games include Wharton County Junior College (March 2 and April 8), Galveston College (March 11 and April 20), Blinn College (March 16 and April 29), and Alvin College (March 25 and May 4). San Jac will also face #17 Navarro College (March 6) and South Suburban College (March 14) in non-conference action at home.
The 2017 Region XIV Tournament will take place May 12 – 16, and the NJCAA Alpine Bank JUCO World Series in Grand Junction, Colorado, is slated for May 27 – June 3. Last season, San Jac finished as the national runner-up in its NJCAA record 24th trip to the JUCO World Series.
San Jac finished the 2016 season as Region XIV South Zone champions, undefeated Region XIV champions and the national runner-up with a 51-12 overall record and 31-9 in conference play. Seven players were selected in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft and Arrington was named the Region XIV Coach of the Year for the 11th time.
About San Jacinto College
Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, since 1961. As a fiscally sound institution, the College currently holds bond ratings of AA and Aa2 by Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s, respectively. San Jacinto College is a 2017 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence Top 10 finalist and an Achieving the Dream Leader College. Approximately 30,000 students each semester benefit from a support system that maps out a pathway for success. The College offers seven areas of study that prepare a diverse body of students to transfer to a four-year college or university or enter the workforce with the skills needed to support the growing industries along the Texas Gulf Coast. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $690 million each year to the Texas workforce.