West Ranch’s Casey Burrill says his greatest pleasure as a baseball coach comes when he can do his part in helping match one of his players with the ideal college program.
Location, coaching and playing time are just a few of the factors he weighs when assisting in his players’ recruitment.
Once again, he believes one of his players has found a perfect match.
Senior shortstop Christos Stefanos – last season’s Foothill League Player of the Year – announced his commitment to NAIA Biola University earlier this week.
“I think all of the coaches in the area do a great job of helping their players identify landing spots for their players in college,” Burrill said in a phone interview. “Christos has been a huge contributor to our program and I’m really happy he found a match.
Stefanos has opened the season 5-for-18 with three RBIs, a double and two triples. One of those triples came in Monday’s win over El Camino Real at USC’s Dedeaux Field, which served as the game-winning hit in an eventual victory.
Last season, Stefanos hit .480 and drove in 18 runs in 10 Foothill League games on his way to winning the league’s Player of the Year honors.
Stefanos joins an ever-growing list of players on West Ranch’s current squad that is committed to play at a college.
Senior first baseman Will Chambers and junior right-hander JD Callahan are committed to play at UC Santa Barbara and senior left-hander Alex Burge is committed to play at Loyola Marymount.
“We are thrilled that we have West Ranch players – current and future players – that want to play at the college level,” Burrill said. “That shows a commitment to the game and I think that’s helped establish a culture within the program.
“It doesn’t matter what level you’re playing at, the pro scouts will come find you.”