Kelowna Falcons

Season Preview 2014

With less than a week until the players and coaches start to arrive, it’s time to take a look at the new roster for the 2014 season of Kelowna Falcons baseball.


Kyle Anderson – 5/28/2014

Change is the keyword for the team this season, after coming off a disappointing 19-35 record in the 2013 West Coast League (WCL) season. Billy Clontz will take over the Head Coaching role this year, with pitching coach Dylan Jones, hitting coach Richie Jimenez and Assistant Coach Casey Harmes joining him on the bench.

The WCL will also see changes this season, first with the addition of the Yakima Valley Pippins as the 12th team, and seeing a shift to three divisions. The Falcons will play out of the East Division, with the aforementioned Pippins, the Wenatchee AppleSox, and the Walla Walla Sweets.

The WCL will also go to an unbalanced schedule this season, meaning the Falcons will take on the teams in their division nine times each for 27 games, and will play every other team three times except for the Bellingham Bells, whom they will play six times. Kelowna fans will see Victoria, Cowlitz, Bellingham, and Kitsap at Elks Stadium this year, but will not see Medford, Klamath Falls, Bend, or Corvallis.

The roster for the 2014 season sees a lot of varied talent making their way north of the border, along with some Canadian flavor as well. Of the current roster, five hail from Canada, including four from BC. Fans of the Okanagan Athletics program will get to welcome back Josh Croft and Dawson Yates, while Okanagan College fans will see Joel Lamont of White Rock toe the rubber this year.

Two UBC Thunderbirds will become Falcons for the summer, as Toronto’s Jeremy Newton and Deep Bay’s Kevin Biro will both don the Kelowna jersey. Biro had a fantastic year under Terry McKaig, hitting .341 with 31 RBI’s, which Newton threw 56.2 Innings with a 3.49 ERA.

Overall there are 22 pitchers on the roster at this point, with two still in action with their college teams as of May 25th. One name that Falcons fans may remember is Scotland Church, who threw in 9.2 innings with the team last year, and also hit .263 with 9 RBI. This year at Wetherford College, Church threw 18.2 innings holding opponents to a .192 average.

Other numbers that jump off the page from the college seasons are those of Darrien Moran (Auburn, WA), David Kuzma (Las Vegan, NV), and Riley Barr (Idaho Falls, ID).

Throwing for Pierce Community College of the NWAAC, Moran threw 81 innings and went 7-2 with 1.67 ERA. He also struck out 60 while allowing 1.02 walks and hits per inning pitched (WHIP).

Kuzma saw action in 14 of Southern Nevada’s (NJCAA) games, throwing 64.1 innings, with a 3.34 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP. He only walked 10 batters the entire season.

Barr appeared in 27 games for the New Mexico State (D1), throwing 64.1 innings with a 2.94 ERA. He would win five games, striking out 46 as the Aggies went 21-29 on the season.

Looking away from the mound and onto the field, the Falcons have 19 players signed for the 2014 season, with three of them opening up NCAA D1 Regional play Friday May 30th.

Andrew Godbold (Oak Park, IL) and Kevin Carr (Chandler, AZ) will play for Southeastern Louisiana in the Baton Rouge Regional going up against LSU in the first game. Godbold was named to the All-Tournament team in the Southland Conference tournament, finishing the season and tournament with a .348 average including eight HR’s and 57 RBI’s.

Photo courtesy of Greystoke Photography

Elsewhere on the diamond, the Falcons have brought in a variety of talent, all of which have put up pretty good numbers with their college teams. The 19 hitters have amassed 763 hits including 123 doubles, putting up a .361 average.

Leading the way with a .392 average was Ryan Degner (Hillsboro, OR) who was also named to the First Team All-Central Region by Rawlings/American Baseball Coaches Association. He had a hit in 41 of 52 games for the D2 Griffons, and also had four hits in a game three times this season.

Jeff Nelson (Puyallup, WA), and Colt Pickens (Oklahoma City, OK), are others to watch for June 6th as the season opens up.

Nelson, an Outfielder for Pierce Community College of the NWAAC (teammate of Darrien Moran), hit .358 with 26 RBI’s. He also brings his speed north of the border, as he swiped 27 bases in 41 games.

Pickens had 75 hits and 33 RBI’s for Murray State, a DII Junior College, as he hit .355 leading the Aggies to a 48-20 record.

The action promises to be exciting as the players assembled have had personal collegiate success this season. Don’t miss the FREE home opener Friday June 6th presented by TELUS as the BC rivalry is renewed between the Victoria Harbourcats and your Kelowna Falcons. First pitch is 6:35.

If you wish to follow the three future Falcons in the College World Series, the regionals get underway on Friday May 30th, and you can follow live at

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