PACIFICA CHRISTIAN — Where to start?
Pacifica Christian High School, a small private institution that was founded just a few short years ago, is fielding its first ever baseball team this season.
The school has rolled out sports team after sports team since its inception and has enjoyed a great deal of success. Its teams, albeit new to the local sports scene, have won league titles and the boys basketball squad this season reached the semifinals of the California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section playoffs.
With that said, how can the Seawolves’ latest foray into athletics prove to be as fruitful?
Head Coach Julian Chavez, who is leading his first high school team, said that despite all of the obstacles that come with starting a team the toughest task has been somewhat mundane.
“The most difficult part for us was finding a practice field,” Chavez said during practice. “It was a lot more difficult than I expected.”
Whatever Chavez is doing must be working because his Seawolves have stormed out to a 2-1 record during their inaugural season. The most recent victory came against Mulholland League rival Shalhevet High School on Thursday. Pacifica Christian cruised to an amazing 28-0 rout.
All of this early season success comes from a team that boasts just 11 players with eight of those being freshman. Despite the relative inexperience of its players, the team has stood up to all comers and appears to be on track for a possible playoff selection.
“I think we’re pretty good,” freshman Zach McMillan said. “We have a shot at a league championship.”
Not only have the young Seawolves held their ground against older teams, but appear to welcome the challenge.
“I think (other teams) underestimate us at first,” McMillan said. “But, we show them what we got. I think it’s our hitting that makes them take notice.”
The offense has been strong for a team that has scored 45 runs in just three ball games. With that punch the team will certainly stay in most contests, but Chavez said that it’s pitching and defense that will carry the team to a potential league title.
One of the problems the team has is — again — practice. A trio of his players also play on the school’s boys volleyball team, which also plays during the spring semester. He said that has hurt the defensive side of the ball the most because players don’t have an opportunity to play with their teammates, developing much needed chemistry and familiarity.
Despite those shortcomings, Chavez feels that his team is further along than he expected and gives much of the credit to his young players. He hopes that will carry on for seasons to come.
“These kids are only going to get better,” Chavez said. “I can’t wait to see where we are when these guys are all seniors.”
Chavez’ players are also optimistic about the future and credit their coach for that rosy outlook.
“He’s done great thus far,” Hammer said. “I feel like he can relate well to us. He’s easy to talk to and makes practices fun.”