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Chattahoochee Valley baseball opens season Friday looking for third straight trip to JUCO World Series

Video: CVCC baseball coach Adam Thomas talks pressure and mama's chocolate cake

CVCC opens the baseball season Friday, looking for a third straight trip to the JUCO World Series
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CVCC opens the baseball season Friday, looking for a third straight trip to the JUCO World Series

For the first 13 years Adam Thomas coached the Chattahoochee Valley Community College baseball program, the question he was always asked was "why can't you win the conference and advance to the Junior College World Series."

After two straight Alabama Community College Conference championships and two trips to the world series, the question has become "when are you going to win it all."

But Thomas says he is not feeling any pressure.

"If we never go back, I have experienced the things I needed to experience," he said. "But here is the thing, it is kind of like momma's chocolate cake, you know, you get one piece, you want two. you get two, you want three."

" No pressure, not any more. We are fortunate we have a good team and we have a chance to do it again."

Thomas said he doesn't think his players feel any pressure, either.

"No, I don't think so," Thomas said. "We have a couple of redshirt sophomores who have been here for the past two. I don't think pressure is the right word. I think it is more expectations is the right word to use there.

"We had a team meeting yesterday (Sunday) and I told the guys, we did this to ourselves by winning. We should enjoy it, not feel any pressure."

Catcher JT Thomas agrees with his coach.

"I wouldn't say there is pressure," Thomas said. "Every team knows we have been out there two years in a row. Every team, when we play them, their goal is to beat Chattahoochee Valley. Everyone wants to knock us off. That is always in the back of our minds. But we need to just go out there and play. Only thing we can control is how we go out there and play and how hard we play. I think if we go out and play the game the way we know how, we will be fine."

The Pirates, who are ranked fourth in one preseason poll and fifth in another, open the 2016 season on the road at Panama City, Fla. They will play Tallahassee Community College at 4 p.m. Friday, then face host Gulf Coast State at 6:30 p.m.

But they will do so without two of their leaders from last season. Catcher JT Thomas is out for a minimum of two weeks after breaking a bone in his left thumb during an intrasquad game. And pitcher Chase Burks is out at least two weeks with a sprained ankle.

"Can we win it, yes. Will we win it, I don't know, we might fall flat on our face," Thomas said. "So many things can happen.

" They understand what we have here and have accomplished. But we have to do things the right way, and we have to have some things go our way."

Notes: CVCC has already had four players sign Division-I scholarships: JT Thomas (Mercer), Chase Adkins (Georgia), Logan Haner (Western Kentucky) and Jordan Lee (Georgia State). The Pirates were the overwhelming favorites to win the ACCC again this year in a poll of league coaches. CVCC received 11 of the 17 first-place votes. No one else received more than two.

Kevin Price, 706-320-4493, Follow Kevin on Twitter

ROSTER

OF/LHP Brandon Hill OF/LHP MJ Rookard, IF Jaylen Smith, OF Tim Kennedy, RHP Cody Harrison, IF Jay Meuse, RHP Chase Adkins, LHP Brandon Satterfield, 1B Carson Hughes, RHP Jordan Lee, OF Nolan Greckel, LHP Christian Vann, IF AJ Willoughby, UTY Caleb Lynn, OF Isaac Phillips, 2B Tanner Davis, RHP Alex Graulich, OF Will Campbell, LHP JD Brown, LHP Stewart Tyler, LHP Garrett Deloney, IF Jayson Cook, C JT Thomas, UTY Nick Poskey, OF Kurt Ornowski, LHP Jacob Ozley, C Frank Wager, 1B/RHP Trent Simpson, RHP Logan haner, RHP Chase Burks, RHP Jelani Clarington.

SCHEDULE

January

29, vs. Tallahassee Community College (at Panama City, Fla.), 4 p.m.; at Gulf Coast State, 6:30 p.m. 30, at Gulf Coast State, 11 a.m.; vs. Tallahassee Community College (at Panama City, Fla.), 1:30 p.m.

February

4, Point (DH), 1 p.m.; 9, Central Alabama, 2 p.m.; 10, Southern Union, 2 p.m.; 13, at Andrew, 2 p.m.; 18, Perfect Game, 4:30 p.m.; 20, ABAC, 2 p.m.; 24, Chipola, 2 p.m.; 26, at Tallahassee Community College, 5 p.m.; 27, at Tallahassee Community College, 2 p.m.; 28, at Tallahassee Community College, 1 p.m.

March

4, at ABAC, 2 p.m.; 7, at West Georgia Tech, 1 p.m.; 10, Enterprise State (DH), noon; 12, at Enterprise State (DH), 1 p.m.; 17, Wallace-Dothan (DH), 1 p.m.; 19, at Wallace-Dothan, 1 p.m.; 21, West Georgia Tech, 2 p.m.; 24, at Alabama Southern (DH), 1 p.m.; 26, Alabama Southern, 1 p.m.; 29, Thomas, 2 p.m., 31, at Bishop State (DH), 1 p.m.

April

2, Bishop State (DH), 1 p.m.; 5, at Shelton State, 2 p.m.; 7, at Jeff Davis (DH), 1 p.m.; 9, Jeff Davis (DH), 1 p.m.; 12, at Southern Union, 3;30 p.m.; 13, at Central Alabama, 5 p.m.; 19, Shelton State, 2 p.m.; 21, Wallace-Selma (DH), 1 p.m.; 23, at Wallace-Selma (DH), 1 p.m.; 26, at Chipola, 3 p.m.; 28, at L.B. Wallace (DH), 1 p.m.; 30, L.B. Wallace (DH), 1 p.m.

May

5, Faulkner State (DH), 1 p.m.; 7, at Faulkner State (DH), 2 p.m.

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