It’s already been a memorable season, but for the Delgado Dolphins, the memories aren’t finished just yet…
Let’s Get it Started…
When the 2014 Delgado Baseball squad first convened as a team last fall, Head Coach Joe Scheuermann passed out green wristbands with the season’s slogan, with the mindset that the Dolphins would carry through the early days of fall classes, the fall practice and scrimmage schedule, winter and holiday break, into the spring semester, and onto the spring schedule. It was a simple but powerful catch phrase:May starts Today. So really, to summarize, May started back in August for this year’s crop of Dolphins. While the calendar said otherwise, the jam-packed schedule and day-to-day operations of the program revolved around a simple premise…it’s not where you start but where you finish. Every action on and off of the field, in and out of the classroom, and on and off campus had implications on the postseason. Delgado Baseball had its eyes set on May from the start and today, they’ve accomplished something only two other teams in the program’s forty year history can brag about—they’re representing the College and the community at the Junior College World Series.
Four Decades of Dolphins
2014 was already a milestone season as the program marks the 40th anniversary of its humble beginnings. Following Loyola University’s decision to drop athletics following the 1972 season, Head Coach “Rags” Scheuermann crossed town at the invitation of the Delgado administration to jump start an intercollegiate athletic department at the state’s first two-year college. From a program that started without a baseball, it transitioned from a club team to an intercollegiate team quickly, joining the ranks and sanctions of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) and adding more and more regional and national competition to the schedule each season. As they say, the rest is history, as Delgado Baseball has morphed into a nationally recognized program, a stepping stone both for both athletics and academics. Thousands have filled the rosters, the vast majority coming from a deep local talent pool, keeping and fostering the program’s family atmosphere as family and friends can stay connected and involved as they can cheer on what’s become “the community’s home team”
A Busy Spring
2014 has seen a busier-than-usual calendar as the Dolphins have competed against a tough slate of opponents, events, and accolades. In a break from tradition, the season began on the road as Delgado represented the College at the American Association of Community College’s Workforce convention in St. Petersburg, Florida at the end of January. A week later, the Dolphins hosted their annual “Rags” Scheuermann Memorial Tournament, which opens the busy schedule at Kirsch-Rooney Stadium. The traditional spring trips to Pensacola and Walt Disney World followed, with Delgado participating in its ninth consecutive Spring Warm-Up at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando. In mid-March, the Miss-Lou conference slate of games opened with home and home series against Meridian Community College and Baton Rouge Community College. A regular series Miss-Lou conference title landed an opportunity to host the Region XXIII Division I Championship at Kirsch-Rooney Stadium. On Sunday, May 11, Delgado claimed its eighth Region XXIII Championship in the past nine seasons, earning the right to advance to the South Central District Regional in Neosho, Missouri. Following a hard-fought four games against two-nationally ranked teams, Crowder College and Seminole State College, Delgado emerged as the South Central District Champions with a berth in the JUCO World Series.
Taking the next Step
While it’s already been a busy spring, the team doesn’t see the World Series trip as a bonus round, they see it as the next step on a path. Delgado’s JUCO Journey started in August, led Delgado to St. Petersburg, Orlando, Pensacola, Eunice, Baton Rouge, Meridian, to Neosho, and finally to Grand Junction, Colorado. After being recognized on each national poll of the season, Delgado takes its place with nine other of the nation’s best programs, ready to compete for the ultimate prize: a national championship title.
The Dolphins are in the news, not just around the city, but around the country. Here are a few links from recent article:
Delgado starter Chase Hymel to start opener in JUCO World Series (The Advocate) http://www.theneworleansadvocate.com/sports/9247965-171/delgado-ace-chase-hymel-to
Video: Eight Delgado sophomores receive diplomas in advance of Junior College World Series (SportsNOLA.com) http://www.sportsnola.com/sports/sports-blogs/lenny-vangilder/608783-video-8-delgado-sophomores-graduate-before-world-series-practice.html
Delgado heading to the JUCO World Series (NOLA.com) http://www.nola.com/sports/index.ssf/2014/05/delgado_heading_to_junior_coll.html
Delgado’s Joe Scheuermann more than just a baseball coach (SportsNOLA.com) http://www.sportsnola.com/sports/local-sports-news/delgado-news/608813-delgados-joe-scheuermann-more-than-just-a-baseball-coach-born-to-be-one.html
Delgado Baseball to begin Junior College World Series with a tough challenge Saturday (NOLA.com) http://www.nola.com/sports/index.ssf/2014/05/delgado_baseball_to_begin_juni.html#incart_river
Cox Sports Louisiana Baseball Show (Richey on Sports) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3HmSmoYOgU
Delgado brimming with local flavor (NOLA.com) http://highschoolsports.nola.com/news/article/-3212127918814756381/delgado-brimming-with-local-flavor-in-drive-to-junior-college-world-series/
JUCO 2014 coverage in the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel:
When does it start and how can we watch?
Delgado will open play in the JUCO World Series on Saturday, May 23 at 8:30 CST/7:30 MST against Chattahoochee Valley at Sam Suplizio Field in Grand Junction, Colorado. You can watch the game on NJCAA-TV and follow play-by-play with Delgado’s Game Tracker feature. Additional links and tournament resources are also available at www.delgadoathletics.com. For photos and more, follow the fish on Facebook.com/delgadobaseball and Twitter @delgadodolphins.