The Cal Times student news is a publication of the Student Association Inc. at California University of Pennsylvania

Cal Times

The Cal Times student news is a publication of the Student Association Inc. at California University of Pennsylvania

Cal Times

The Cal Times student news is a publication of the Student Association Inc. at California University of Pennsylvania

Cal Times

Vulcans Baseball Starting the Season Hot, Winners in 10 of Last 12 Games

Recap of Beginning of Vulcan Baseball Season
Vulcan Athletics
The 2024 Vulcans Baseball Team

As basketball season fades into memory, the spotlight now shifts to the diamond action of Vulcan baseball. With summer’s embrace right around the corner, California’s collegiate athletes are proving to be a force to be reckoned with, dominating the PSAC West standings with a stellar 17-6 record overall and an impressive 6-2 mark in conference play. Fuelled by a cohesive team effort, the Vulcans are setting the standard for excellence on the field, and continue to do it in a way that involves everyone on the team playing their individual roles.

Leading the charge for the Vulcans is Payton Conte, a local Junior sensation and son of head coach Mike Conte. Hailing from California high school, right down the road from campus, Conte boasts a jaw-dropping .519 batting average, setting the pace for his team’s offensive onslaught. In just 17 games, Conte has amassed 28 hits in 54 plate appearances, demonstrating an uncanny ability to reach base as he works the count often, drawing four walks and 6 hit-by-pitches as well. His remarkable on-base percentage of .585 and slugging percentage of .778 not only lead the team, but also rank him at the top of the PSAC overall. Despite playing fewer games than some of his counterparts, Conte’s impact is undeniable, electrifying the Vulcan lineup with his remarkable discipline at the plate.

Joining Conte in the spotlight is Santino Marra, a Junior infielder hailing from Uniontown, PA, and a guy that is not unfamiliar with the spotlight. Marra’s consistency at the plate is a testament to his dedication and skill, boasting a formidable .361 batting average along with 21 RBIs, 12 runs scored, seven doubles, and six stolen bases. Last season, Marra finished with a .404 batting average on 76 hits, 44 RBIs, 34 runs scored, and 9 stolen bases in 50 games. Building upon his impressive career, Marra’s contributions have been instrumental in propelling the Vulcans to their current standing atop the PSAC West.

However, the Vulcan’s success is not confined to individual brilliance alone. Players like Caleb Collins, Ryan Callahan, and Nathan Meeks have also emerged as key contributors, collectively propelling the team to the pinnacle of the PSAC West batting ranks with a team average of .302. Their collective efforts have resulted in an impressive 218 hits in 722 plate appearances, showcasing their offensive prowess and proving to everyone that they are the real deal.

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Notably, the Vulcan’s disciplined approach at the plate is reflected in their league-leading strikeout total of only 121, highlighting their ability to put the ball in play and force opposing defenses to make plays. It is a testament to their strategic approach and team-first mentality, where every member of the lineup contributes to the team’s success.

As the season continues to unfold, the Vulcan baseball team continues to defy expectations and rewrite the record books as they climb the standings and continue to show their worth. With their sights set on postseason glory, these California ballplayers are poised to leave an indelible mark on the collegiate baseball landscape. Watch out, PSAC West—the Vulcans are just getting started.

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About the Contributor
Andrew White
Andrew White, Sports Editor

Andrew White is the Sports Editor and serves as a staff writer for the CalTimes.  He has a deeply engraved passion for sports and loves to inform the community about the local teams, both on and off campus. He is a Senior here at PennWest California, majoring in Communication Studies with a minor in Business Management.

Growing up in Brownsville, PA, Andrew is a die-hard Yinzer and will always have a place in his heart for the city of Pittsburgh and where he came from.  He serves as a play-by-play commentator for California’s basketball teams and hopes to land a career in Broadcasting, Public Relations, or Media Writing down the line, with his main goal being finding success as a play-by-play commentator.

Andrew is involved in CUTV, WCAL, CalTimes, and dips his hands in some graphic design work as well. He will be graduating in May and looks forward to his next steps of his career past PennWest California. He is the son of Tami and Stephen White of Brownsville, PA.

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    ELIZABETH LUSKApr 6, 2024 at 10:33 pm

    Article is well written and colorful.