- After taking a sneek peak into the pitching staff for 2017 we will shift our attention to the position players. 2016 was the best offensive numbers the Coyotes had put up since 2009. 2nd in team average, runs, total bases, OBP and slugging percentage this seasons Coyotes is looking to continue the trend of setting new records.
Coyotes open their season on the road in Las Vegas February 10th against Eastern Utah State
Starting in the outfield the Coyotes will be led by centerfielder Davis Todosichuk (Junior, Kelowna, BC). Todosichuk had a break out season in 2016 where he finished with a .381 clip which was good for 3rd in the league, also he had 19 stolen bases while only being caught 3 times. Todosichuk was recognized as 1st Team All Conference. Jeremy Buckley (Sophomore, Kelowna, BC) will be looked upon for a larger role in left field after hitting .261 in 2016 in limited action. He is coming off a solid fall and offseason and looking to breakout and be a major contributor. Brandon Graham (Senior, Prince George, BC) is back after missing the 2016 season. In 2015 Graham hit .278 and was a regular in right field. 2017 will see him log time in right field and as well in the infield. Newcomers and freshman Brandon Mallam (Kelowna, BC), Jacob O’quinn (Vernon, BC) and Zach Bailey (Edmonton, AB) all will be looking to contribute and add depth to the outfield.
“Our outfield defense has been a major strength over the last couple of seasons, and we see no reason for that to change. We have a nice balance of left handed hitters and right handed hitters and all can provide that threat on the base paths.” adds Head Coach Geoff White.
Around the infield will see familiar faces return. Liam Wyatt (Sophomore, Montreal, QC) will be back at third base where he was 2nd Team All conference in 2016 hitting .297 and led the team with 18 RBI. Wyatt will be a main stay in the middle of the lineup. Jared Dulaba (Senior, Port Coquitlam, BC) will return to the middle infield and look to build off a solid 2016. Dulaba will anchor the infield from short stop. Returning 2nd team all conference second basemen Eric Junnola (Junior, Calgary, AB) will look to continue swinging a hot bat after breaking out in 2016. Hitting .355 and playing excellent defense Junnola will also add a threat to the base paths. Trevor Lofstrom (Sophomore, West Kelowna, BC) is back at first base. He will look to breakout after a 2016 campaign that had its ups and downs. Lofstrom had a great fall and off season and looks to be a major threat in the lineup, Lofstrom will also see some time in the outfield. Jared Frew (Senior, Calgary, AB) missed 2016 and looking to be a major contributor to the Coyote offense. He will serve a utility role in the infielder along with being the primary DH. Frew had an outstanding fall at the plate and will be counted on for quality at bats ,drive in runs and senior leadership. Freshman Alex Russell (Kelowna, BC), Marcus Glowacki (Kelowna, BC), Ken Dubois (Vancouver, BC), Nick Pelletier (Calgary, AB), Brevin Nowoczin (Prince George, BC) and Noah Wood-Jolivet (Mississauga, ON)all have had productive fall and offseasons and will be called upon to contribute. All will provide depth to the lineup. Glowacki, Russell, arend Wood-Jolivet will also see time in the outfield.
“This is the deepest infield we have had, there are talented players at each spot and we have depth. Not to mention guys that can play multiple positions in the infield and jump to the outfield be play solid defense. Were we lack in speed in the lineup in 2017 compared to 2016, we have added some power. I am confident in this group and that we are going to hit.” says White.
Behind the plate and working with the pitching staff will be Jake Fischer (Sophomore,Edmonton, AB) Fischer will see the bulk of the catching duties and look to build off a solid freshman campaign where he hit .271 in a platoon role. After having a great fall and offseason he will be counted on to lead the staff and defense. Freshman Lee Worobec (Edmonton, AB) Jacob Holland (West Kelowna, BC), Drake Thompson (Medicine Hat, AB) will be counted on to back up Fischer. Thompson doubles as a first basemen while Worobec also will see time on the mound.
“Fischer will see a significant more load in 2017 compared to 2016. He is ready for it, he is prepared and we are looking for him to be a major catalyst in the lineup. Our freshman catchers have shown flashes of being ready, it will be a matter of consistency defensively and at the plate for who will see more time. “adds White.
“This is a gritty group and we have been putting in the time this offseason preparing. We are going to have to play tough and be able to deal with some challenges and adversity along the way. Our schedule in Las Vegas and Phoenix will establish a level in which we need to play at to be successful game 1 through 65.” finishes Head Coach Geoff White