SAN BRUNO, Calif. – For the second straight year, the University of San Diego was picked to win the 2017 West Coast Conference Championship in the 2017 preseason poll of the WCC’s 10 head coaches. The Toreros earned five of nine possible first-place votes and 77 overall points in the poll.
Gonzaga University, which shared a portion of the 2016 regular season title en route to the first at-large NCAA Regional berth in program history was tabbed second with 73 points, including three first-place votes.
Winners of two of the last three WCC Tournament Championships, Pepperdine University, earned 63 points and picked up two first place votes to sit in third place. Brigham Young University shared the 2016 regular season title and tallied 59 points in preseason balloting, good for fourth place overall.
Saint Mary’s College made history last season, winning a share of the first regular season WCC title in program history and won the WCC Tournament for the first time en route to the program’s inaugural NCAA Regional appearance. The Gaels were tabbed fifth with 49 points, followed by Bay Area rival University of San Francisco in sixth place with 40 points.
Loyola Marymount University (37), University of the Pacific (21), Santa Clara University (20) and University of Portland (13) rounded out the poll.
All told, eight of the 10 WCC schools are represented on the preseason All-West Coast Conference team, led by defending champions Gonzaga, which placed two position players and a pitcher and Saint Mary’s, which had a position player join two pitchers on the preseason list. BYU, San Diego and San Francisco each placed a pair on the team.
All 10 student-athletes captured All-WCC honors last season with five appearing on the 2016 first team: Jeff Bohling (Gonzaga), Phil Caulfield (Loyola Marymount), Tyler Frost (Gonzaga), Zach Kirtley (Saint Mary’s), Danny Mayer (Pacific). Bohling is the reigning WCC Player of the Year, while Keaton Kringlen (BYU) was the WCC Freshman of the Year in 2016. This year’s preseason team features one position player and one pitcher who were named to the 2016 advance list.
The 2017 season begins on Friday, February 17, with all 10 West Coast Conference teams in action. For a complete interactive schedule, please visit WCCsports.com, and follow @WCCsports on Twitter for updates throughout the season.
The 2017 West Coast Conference Baseball Championship will be held at Banner Island Ballpark May 25-27 in Stockton, Calif.
2017 WCC Preseason Baseball Coaches Poll
|Team (First Place Vote)||Pts.|
|1. San Diego||(5)||77|
|5. Saint Mary’s||49|
|6. San Francisco||40|
|7. Loyola Marymount||37|
|9. Santa Clara||20|
2017 All-WCC Preseason Baseball Team – Position Players
|Riley Adams||San Diego||Jr.||C|
|Phil Caulfield||Loyola Marymount||Sr.||IF|
|Nico Giarratano||San Francisco||Sr.||IF|
|Zach Kirtley||Saint Mary’s||Jr.||IF|
|Ross Puskarich||San Francisco||Jr.||IF|
2017 All-WCC Preseason Baseball Team – Pitchers
|Cameron Neff||Saint Mary’s||Sr.||RHP|
|Nick Sprengel||San Diego||So.||LHP|
|Johnny York||Saint Mary’s||Sr.||LHP|