BPCC’s baseball team is off to solid start with high hopes this season
Armed with a good mixture of experience and talent among newcomers and returnees, Bossier Parish Community College baseball coach Aaron Vorachek is aiming for the regional tournament and a possible shot at the NJCAA World Series.
Vorachek, entering his seventh season as head coach, guided the Cavaliers to 30-plus wins in 2007, 2008 and 2009. After last season’s disappointing 21-31 record, the Cavaliers are off to a fast start this season and plan on regaining the 30-win plateau or better.
“In our conference, if you get 40 wins you have had an exceptional season,” Vorachek said. “Thirty-plus wins is a good season.”
What the team lacks in star power so far has been more than made up with quality depth, particularly in pitching and at the plate.
“There really is no one superstar,” Vorachek said. “But on any given day any one player can be that superstar. We don’t rely on any one player. In years past it was easy to point out somebody but this is probably the best all around group I’ve had since I’ve been here. We have a different superstar each day.”
In years past, Vorachek said, loss of a starter would have been devastating to the season. But, with the overall quality and balance of this year’s squad, the team has not only survived some early season injuries but has excelled in their temporary absence and he feels the team will be even stronger once they return to the lineup.
Heading into the season, pitching was an area of concern but starters Jared Exline, Preston Gray, Cole Hesson and Ethan Hammond have been solid performers and the bullpen has been strong as well. After opening the season with a pair of losses, BPCC won its next six games to start the season.
Through the first eight games, the team has a healthy .307 batting average despite injuries keeping a pair of starters out of the lineup at times.
“We will be even better than that when a few guys I know can hit start hitting,” Vorachek said. “It’s early in the season and I’m sure they will come around.”
Even without the team hitting on all cylinders right now, Vorachek believes he has one of the top team batting averages nationally.
Defense hasn’t been shabby either, with a .965 fielding percent. “We’ve never been close to that,” Vorachek said.
Anything can happen and the task ahead is daunting, but Vorachek believes this year’s squad has the potential to be the best he’s had at BPCC.
Conference foe Navarro College won the national title three years ago, and Northeast Texas is the defending conference champion.
“They are all tough,” Vorachek said of the conference opponents.
But, he said, this year’s BPCC team reminds him a great deal of Navarro’s national championship team: solid pitching, good offense and solid defense all without a real superstar on the team.
It’s a formula he hopes will yield an exceptional season.
“We’ve been getting the job done with good pitching, solid defense and we’re hitting the ball OK,” Vorachek said.