Relatively new to the Santa Clarita Valley, the West Ranch has shown throughout the 2017-18 school year that they belong in the competitive Foothill League.
“I think we got a good start,” said West Ranch baseball head coach Casey Burrill. “Thirteen or 14 years ago we were only able to compete at the freshman level. Then we brought our small little community up to Stevenson Ranch and the support just carried.”
Upholding academic excellence, the Wildcat student-athletes take pride in what they accomplish inside and outside of the classroom.
“We just have a great balance of student-athletes,” West Ranch boys volleyball head coach Brandon Johnson said. “I know that we take care of the work in the classroom in addition for work on the court.”
Getting recognized for their academic performance in the classroom, the Wildcats boys volleyball team blazed through the Foothill League schedule going undefeated in league play finishing the season with an overall record of 26-6.
Equally impressive, the West Ranch girls and boys tennis teams boasted impressive seasons with the brother-sister combo of Parker and Jordyn McBride taking home the singles titles.
The baseball team finished second in league and Burrill and his staff and look to build on the successful season with brothers Ryan and Jovan Camacho returning for their senior years.
Gunnar Murray helped the Wildcats win a Foothill League and Newhall Cup title finishing runner-up in the CIF-SS Division Team Championships.
Girls lacrosse finished the season 15-4, upsetting Westlake in the quarterfinals of the LA Girls Championships to reach the semifinals.
The West Ranch swim team blossomed under first-year head coach Kearsten Livingstone and return some key pieces that will be vital in the program’s continued success in and out of the water.
Trying to repeat this year’s success will be a daunting task that none of the Wildcats are downplaying, but two things remain true for every sport at West Ranch: academic excellence and a team atmosphere.
“You swim to get to school, you don’t go to school to swim,” Livingstone said. “It gives you a sense of team unity.”
Female Athlete of the Year (As selected by the school)
Winning the 2017 CIF Girls State Golf Championship title as a freshman, the UCLA commit was a star for the Wildcat girls golf team, helping them to a third-place finish by perfecting her mental game throughout the year.
Male Athletes of the Year (As selected by the school)
Ryan and Jovan Camacho
Dual-sport athletes, the Camacho brothers doubled in football and baseball. Ryan was second on the football team in rushing with 556 yards on 72 carries and four touchdowns. Jovan was a stud wide receiver, ending the season with 590 yards on 40 receptions to go with five touchdowns. Both finished top two in total yards. On the baseball diamond, Ryan hit a .382 batting average on 34 hits with 20 RBIs, while Jovan finished the season with a .280 batting average on 23 hits to go with 15 RBIs.
Five most memorable male athletes
Parker McBride – Winning the Foothill League singles title after defeating fellow Wildcat teammate Davey Woodland, McBride qualified for CIF Southern Section Boys Individual Tennis Sectionals as the No. 1 Foothill League representative. Making it through to the third round after a first-round bye and a second-round match where he only dropped one game, McBride fell on a tie-break.
Tyson Drake – Leading his team to a perfect 10-0 Foothill League season along with the league title, Drake was undeniably one of the Wildcats leaders throughout the year. Amassing 88 kills, 33 aces, 162 digs and a whopping 723 assists on the year, Drake was among the top four in all categories and led the team to the first-round of CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs.
Gunnar Murray – Winning the Foothill League Individual title for the second consecutive year, Murray led the Wildcats to a Newhall Cup title as well as dropping his average strokes from 74.5 to 71.8. Continuing his college career at Cal State East Bay, Murray leaves West Ranch with a legacy of winning.
Will Chambers – Having one of the most impressive hitting performances on the year, Chambers finished third in batting average with .372, second in hits with 34, first with 40 RBIs, second in on-base percentage at .500, first in slugging at .807 and led the Foothill League with nine home runs to tie Mitchell Thompson for the for the single-season record.
Austin Galuppo – A focal point of the Wildcats’ offense, Galuppo led the boys basketball team to a 16-11 record and into the CIF-SS Division 2A playoffs. Shooting a barrage of 3-pointers, Galuppo surpassed the 2,000 career point mark this season, logging 17.3 points, six rebounds and four assists per game to finish his West Ranch career.
Five most memorable female athletes
Reagan Nibarger – Swimming away with the Foothill League title in the 50-yard and 100-yard freestyle, Nibarger was as consistent as they come throughout the year in league meets. At CIF-SS Division 1 finals Nibarger finished seventh in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 23.87 seconds and tied for third in the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 51.44. Qualifying for state in both events, Nibarger opted not to attend the state meet.
Natalie Ramirez – Turning heads and dropping jaws throughout the year, Ramirez broke the Foothill League record in the shot put with a throw of 44 feet, 00.90 inches. At CIF-SS finals, she placed first in the discus throwing a 147 feet and first in the shot put with a throw of 44-08. Sweeping both events, Ramirez became the first girls athlete to double in program history. She set a new Foothill League record in the discus with a throw of 155-10 at The Masters Meet. At the state level, Ramirez placed third and seventh at state in the shot put and discus, respectively.
Jordyn McBride – Playing a big role in West Ranch’s second straight Foothill League title, McBride doubled by capturing the singles title to qualify for the CIF-SS individual playoffs. Becoming the first singles player in West Ranch history to advance to the Round of 32, her magical season ended in the following round.
Gianna Lombardi – Leading the Wildcats in batting average (.488), runs (28), hits (39), RBIs (24) and home runs (4), Lombardi was a nightmare for opposing pitchers leading the Wildcats to an overall record of 16-8.
Allison Jacobs – A UCLA commit, Jacobs led the Wildcats in kills with 167 and in digs with 87 en route to a fourth-place Foothill League finish.
Five most memorable teams
Baseball – Finishing second to Hart, the Wildcats put together an impressive season, showcasing their talent in two five-game winning streaks in the year. Winning the last three league (Valencia and Golden Valley twice) games by a combined score of 29-7, the Cats cruised into the CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs. Falling to Mira Costa 2-1 in the first-round, the Wildcats season was cut short.
Boys golf – Winning the Foothill League title and Newhall Cup on the same day, the Wildcats finished the regular season on top. Boasting the Foothill League Individual Champion, Gunnar Murray, freshmen Matt Monheim and Ben Valdez recorded season-lows in the CIF-SS Division Team Championships.
Boys Tennis – Being crowned the Foothill League Champions, the Wildcats’ team included the No.1 and No. 2 individual players in Parker McBride and Davey Woodland and the Foothill League No.2 doubles partners: Aristo Turalakey and Jake Anderson, each of whom advanced to the CIF-SS individual sectionals.
Boys Volleyball – Winning the Foothill League title and finishing the year 26-6, the Wildcats disposed of every team they faced during the regular season dropping only six matches on the year thanks to senior leadership and two winning streaks of seven games or more on the year. Unable to correlate the same success they had in the regular season, the Wildcats fell in the first-round of the CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs.
Girls lacrosse – Starting the season off on the wrong foot with a loss, the Wildcats’ found their stride and only lost two more games in the regular season. Falling to Agoura in the semifinals of the LA Girls Championships, the team boasted the the Pacific Lacrosse League Defensive Player of the Year, the Coach of the Year, four first-team selections and an honorable mention.
Baseball – Finishing second in Foothill League play, the Wildcats dropped a tough 2-1 loss against Mira Costa in the first round of the CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs.
Boys Basketball – Falling in the first round of the CIF-SS Division 2A playoffs to eventual champions San Marcos, the boys basketball team fought hard in the 61-48 first-round loss.
Boys Golf – Winning the Foothill League and Newhall Cup title, the Wildcats finished as the runner-up in the CIF-SS Division Team Championships, but fell in the CIF-SS SCGA Team Qualifier with a score of 389.
Girls Golf – Qualifying for CIF-SS finals, West Ranch finished third at the team championships with a score of 394 just 15 strokes off the first-place Diamond Bar.
Girls Lacrosse – Ending the season with an overall record of 15-4, the girls lacrosse team upset Westlake in the quarterfinals of the LA Girls Championship 16-15. Meeting Agoura High School in the semifinals, the Wildcats fell 15-13 in what was a tightly contested match.
Boys Soccer – Dropping three Foothill League games the boys soccer team finished second in league play, qualifying them to play in the CIF-SS Division 5 playoffs where they fell to Dunn High School 2-0 in the first round.
Swim – Sending both individual swimmers and relay teams to CIF-SS prelims and finals the Wildcats were well-represented thanks to first-year head coach Kearsten Livingstone and will look to build on the recent success.
Boys Tennis – Sitting atop the Foothill League standings the boys tennis team entered the CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs riding high, but fell 10-8 to Northwood High School in their first-round match.
Girls Tennis – Picking up the program’s first-ever Division 1 postseason win over Los Alamitos 13-5, the Wildcats season ended in the second round with a 16-2 loss to Campbell Hall.
Boys Volleyball – Going undefeated in Foothill League play and winning the Foothill League crown the Wildcats disposed of every team they faced during the regular season dropping only six matches on the year. Being upset against Beckman in the first-round of the CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs, the Wildcats fell in straight sets: 25-22, 25-22, 26-24.