By Ray Conner
Kern Valley’s jayvee baseball team is ready to take the field.
Coming off a season where they were 9-5 overall and 2-2 in league play the Broncs are looking to improve on those numbers.
Second year head coach Bill Gallis will guide the young charges. He is in his fifth year in the Kern Valley baseball program. He will be assisted by Bill Chase.
There are currently 13 players on the Broncs team. Nine of those players are sophomores and six return to the Broncs this season.
The nine sophomores playing for the Broncs are Davin Lee, Ryan Walker, Kenny King, Kenny Porter, Brayden Larsen, Lucas Harris, Blake Waldrop, Nick Timms, and Jeff Cawein. The four freshmen are Dalton Miller, Jayden Lomax, Vinny Pearman, and Jayden Stansbury.
The six that have come back to play again this season are Lee, King, Porter, Harris, Timms, and Waldrop.
The goal as the coach this year is to prepare these young men to be able to step up to the varsity.
Gallis said, “To get the boys ready to play varsity baseball both mentally and physically.”
His goal for the players will be to have them get better as players and to learn the game of baseball.
He said, “To improve their baseball skills every week and to become students of the game.”
According to Gallis he lost three key players from last year’s squad. They are Jacob Lightner, J.J. Forbes, and Trevor Hurley.
Those players new to the team that will step up and try to fill those gaps are Walker, Larsen, Stansbury, Pearman, Miller, Cawein, and Lomax.
In the non-league Gallis wants to see the players become competitive and to battle the tough schedule that he has been presented with.
Gallis said, “Competitiveness, I want the boys to learn how to compete and play under pressure. We have a strong non-league schedule, so it will be a good test to see where we are as a ball club.”
In the High Desert League, Rosamond and Bishop seem to be the teams to beat if Kern Valley wants to challenge for the league title.
Gallis said, “Rosamond, they are a very stacked team and Bishop is always going to be tough.”
Gallis sees the strength of his team in his athletes have a lot of speed. They are gaining the ability to play together as a team.
He said, “Speed. We’re very fast and aggressive. We also have good team chemistry, the boys work well together.”
According to the head coach, batting is an area that needs work. He said, “Pitching and catching, we’re inexperienced in these areas.”
As a closing statement Gallis said, “I feel we have a great group of young men and I’m really looking forward to the season. I feel if we continue to grow and improve each week with our skills, we’ll have a chance to some great things.”
With a little game experience, the young jayvee baseball Broncs can have one of those seasons that they will always remember. They opened the season on Tuesday in McFarland.