Restoring the Winning Tradition at YVCC - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Restoring the Winning Tradition at YVCC

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YAKIMA, Wash. -- Restoring tradition: It's the challenge Yakima Valley Baseball Coach Ken Wilson accepted this past summer. He hopes too restore the Yaks to their legacy, a winning one that includes 21 NWAACC titles.

Yakima Valley Community College has been a name synonymous with winning on the diamond, or at least used to be. From 1947 through 1983, the Yaks won 21 NWAACC titles. Since then, the Yaks have made just 2 championship game appearances, the last one coming in 1993. 

"The other students at the school, they think of baseball and they don't think much of us," said Yaks Pitcher Matt Wargacki.

One reason for the school forgetting about its storied program deals with the fact that the Yaks have not been to the postseason since 2000.

"It definitely weighs on us, thinking about the past, how we haven't been great and how our team is so good now," said Yaks Pitcher Steve Sechoonover. "I think we are just trying to take it one game at a time and get better every day."

So this past summer, the Yaks went out and hired Ken Wilson, a retired school administrator from the Ellensburg and Selah School Districts. He is also a former baseball coach at the NWACC level.

"We didn't build this house," said Wilson. "But, we're in this house now and it's our job to make sure we keep it up and do the job that should be done."

His presence has brought stability in just his 1st season. The Yaks are currently 18-7 and well on their way to a tourney berth.

"We have just been focusing and actually having a goal," said Yaks Pitcher CJ Ketron. "We didn't really expect much last year and now we expect to win."

Wilson and company hope not only to end a decades worth of playoff frustration but to collect the school's 1st title since 1983.

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