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D.J. Whittemore

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D.J. Whittemore Contact Information
Information for D.J. Whittemore
Title Baseball Coach
Jersey 10
Department Intercollegiate Athletics
Office Carson City > Cedar Building 300
Phone 775-445-3250 ext.
E-mail DJ.Whittemore@wnc.edu
Degrees B.S., Liberal Studies, Oregon State University.
At WNC Since 2004
D.J. Whittemore
D.J. Whittemore

D.J. Whittemore is Western Nevada College's head baseball coach. Whittemore was hired in August 2004 and is entering his 9th season as the team's skipper.

During Coach Whittemore's eight year tenure, he has coached 27 players who have been drafted by MLB teams, with 18 of them signing professional contracts. Additionally, he has coached 57 players who have either signed or moved on to play at NCAA Division I schools (47 being products of the last six seasons). Mason Tobin became the 1st former Wildcat to make the major leagues in 2011 when he pitched with the Texas Rangers, and Justin Garcia reached AAA with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2010. Cole Rohrbough has the distinction of being the former player to receive the largest bonus receiving a package in excess of $725,000 from the Atlanta Braves following his sophomore season. The Wildcats program has produced a total of 5 top 10 round draft picks in the last 5 seasons, highlighted by Dylan Baker who was drafted in the 5th round of the 2012 draft by the Cleveland Indians. Logan Odom and Lance Ray share the distinction of being the second highest drafted former players each going in the 8th round. Kyle Farrell and Stephen Sauer follow closely, having been drafted in the 9th round each.

In addition to recruiting and developing outstanding talent, Coach Whittemore has also proven adept at building a winner on the field. His overall record at Western stands at 344-144-2 (71%) after last season's team finished 44-20 and won the Region XVIII championship for the 3rd time. In three tournament games the Wildcats allowed just 1 run and walked 3 hitters in 26 innings pitched. The Wildcats ultimately finished second in the Western District losing to eventual champions Cochise in the championship came. The Wildcats came up 5 innings short of returning to the JUCO World Series for the 4th time and improved to an amazing 12-2 all-time record in Western District Championship play. This, coming on the heels of a 48-17 campaign in 2012 which tied the 2009 team's record for wins in a season. The 2012 team followed an incredible 2011 team that finished 45-15 and set the all-time Scenic West record by winning 37 conference games in 40 tries.

Under Whittemore's leadership the Wildcats record in Scenic West Conference play stands at 269 wins against just 83 defeats. The 269 victories are 61 more than any other team (CSN 208, SLCC 204, CSI 199) during the eight year span. Head to head against the top teams in the Scenic West, the Wildcats have amassed a 145-75 record. Whittemore's teams are averaging an impressive 43 wins per season over the history of the program and his head coaching career.

The Wildcats have won nine championships, including the Scenic West Conference title in 2006, 2009, and 2011; the Region XVIII title in 2007, 2009, 2013; and the Western District Championship in 2007, 2009, and 2012. In sixteen Scenic West Conference races (regular season and post-season) the Wildcats have earned 6 first place finishes, 8 second place finishes, and 2 third place finishes. They have reached the Championship game of the Region XVIII tournament seven consecutive seasons. The Wildcats have won at least 43 games in each of the last five seasons to go an impressive 228-83 over that span. WNC has finished ranked in the top 10 in the country 6 times in the past 7 years.

Coach Whittemore and his staff of dedicated assistants (Coach Demosthenes has been with the program since its inception) have won six Coach of the Year Awards at the helm of the Wildcat program. Whittemore was named Scenic West Conference coach of the year three times 2008, 2009, 2011, and the Western District coach of the year in 2007, 2009, and 2012.

Whittemore credits the hard work of all the talented players who have sacrificed so much to be a part of the program as the reason why the program continuously churns out winners. "Our coaching staff has been blessed to be around many of the finest young men in the country the past seven years," said Whittemore. "To have already had the chance to coach 18 players who have signed professional contracts and 57 more who have inked DI scholarships is an honor."

For all the accolades the Wildcats have received on the field, the accolades in the classroom are even more impressive. Seven times during the last eight seasons (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, and 2013) the Wildcats have been chosen by the National Junior College Athletic Association as Spring Academic Team of the Year award winners. The Wildcats class completion rate has never dipped below 90% in any of the sixteen semesters the team has fielded a team. A recent example of academic success was the 2012 team in which all 10 second year players graduated on time in 2 years followed by another 10 for 10 in 2013.

Coach Whittemore was raised in Reno, where he played baseball and football at Wooster High School. He played baseball for Coach Ron Malcolm, the school's all-time winningest coach, and was named First Team All-Conference as a utility player.

As a collegian, Whittemore pitched, and served as designated hitter. In total, he played three years of college baseball, two in the California junior college system and one at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Whittemore pitched alongside two big league pitchers during his playing days - Doug Davis and Scott Randle.

During his second year of collegiate baseball; he earned All-Conference Honorable Mention honors at Santa Barbara City College in 1995 as a pitcher. That same year, he was selected to play in the Southern California All-Star game and helped his team to a 3-0 shutout victory.

Whittemore's educational background includes an Associate of Arts degree from SBCC, a Bachelor of Science degree from Oregon State University, a Nevada Teacher Certificate from Sierra Nevada College. He believes his training to be a high school teacher helped him immensely with interpersonal relationships that are so important in the coaching profession.

Whittemore's coaching career began in 1998 at Western Oregon University, where he was an undergraduate assistant to head coach Terry Baumgartner. Whittemore assisted with the team's pitchers and conditioning. In 1999, he was hired as the head assistant at Central Catholic High School in Portland, Ore., by Jeremy Beard, before returning to Reno to marry the love of his life, Alicia Paganetti, in 2000.

After returning to Reno, Whittemore continued his coaching career by joining Ron Malcolm's staff at his former high school. Whittemore spent three seasons at Wooster High School where he was a social studies teacher and assistant baseball coach, leading the team's outfielders and pitchers. In 2002, he helped the team win the Nevada AAAA State Championship, marking the first time in 19 years a team from Reno had won the state title. The 2002 championship team finished 30-9 and was ranked ninth on the West Coast according to USA Today. The pitching staff finished the season with a 2.54 earned run average, which was one-hundreth away from the school record.

In 2003, Reed Peters hired Whittemore to coach for Feather River College in Quincy, Calif. He served as the recruiting coordinator, head fund-raiser and pitching coach. FRC finished the 2004 season 22-16 after qualifying for the state playoffs and eventually losing to Sierra College.

The pitching staff at FRC, was top to bottom, one of the best California had to offer. FRC pitchers finished the year fourth in earned run average (3.01), second in opponents' batting average (.249), and fourth (271) in strikeouts. The top five pitchers from the 2004 FRC staff signed Division I scholarships. Included in the group were freshman Anton Maxwell who signed at Oregon State of the Pac-10 conference, Robby Apo (South Dakota State), and Marco Grifiantini (University of California, Davis), along with sophomores Joel Fountain (St. Mary's) and Corey Madden (St. Mary's). Feather River pitchers were also well represented on the Golden Valley all-conference team. Fountain and Grifantini were named to the first team, while Maxwell and Madden were selected to the second team.

Whittemore extends his appreciation to all the outstanding coaches he has played for and coached with, and the opportunity to be northern Nevada's first-ever junior college head coach. Whittemore specifically acknowledges Rob Willson at Sierra College, Ron Malcolm and Nick Kuster at Wooster High School, Pete Savage at Reno High School, Jeremy Beard, Kevin Edwards and Aaron Demosthenes from Western Nevada, and Reed Peters from Feather River as the men who have most influenced his baseball life.

Whittemore and his wife have four children: Aidan 12, George 11, Fiona 7, and Gwyneth 6.

Year by Year Highlights 2013

The 2013 team won the Region XVIII Championship in dominating fashion, outscoring opponents in three games 19-1. Cody Hamlin, Christian Stolo, and Phil Belding combined to throw three complete games in a row, allowing just 1 run and 3 walks while tallying 23 strikeouts. The team advanced all the way to the “if” game of the Western District Championship " even holding the lead against Cochise before a 28 hour lightening delay. The 44 victories was the fourth most all time in program history and saw the sophomore class come within 1 win of tying the record for a two year stretch. Cody Hamlin earned the Region XVIII Pitcher of the Year award, which marked the fourth time in five years a Wildcat hurler took home the top prize. All ten of the 2013 sophomore class earned degrees and graduated on time " marking the second consecutive year that every sophomore in the program graduated. The team also took home the coveted NJCAA Spring Academic Team of the Year award for the 3rd straight season and 7th time in the 8 year history of the program.

2012

The 2012 team won the Western District Championship in dramatic fashion winning three straight in Salt Lake City. The Wildcats first knocked off Central Arizona (Region 1 Champion) and then beat SLCC two in a row to claim their spot in their 3rd JUCO World Series in 6 seasons. The 3 trips represents the most by any team West of Texas. The 48 wins tied the program record. The team eventually fell at the World Series to eventual National Champions Iowa Western 6-4 after a two run home run with 2 outs in the 9th. Dylan Baker cemented his name in the annals of WNC history by winning 13 games in as many tries, being named 1st team all-american, JUCO all-tournament team, and being drafted in the 5th round. The highlight of the year however was the fact that all 10 second year players graduated and the team was named NJCAA Spring Academic Team of the year for the 6th time in 7 seasons. In addition to the academic achievment the sophomore class became the winningest in program history by tallying 93 wins over two seasons!

2011

After many successful campaigns leading the Wildcats, 2011 ranks with the best seasons in school history. Whittemore says, "The leadership on the 2011 team is as good as we have ever had - Sean Dwyer, Connor Eppard, Pat McMeel, Brooks Klein, Chris Woolley, Chris Garrison, Tim Peterson - and the list goes on and on. No team in the history of the program has worked any harder than this group of players, their chemistry was tremendous, their character was beyond reproach, and their educational attainment remarkable. It was truly an honor to have coached that special group of players!"

Proving that hard work pays off, the 2011 draft saw a record seven Wildcats drafted and four of them have inked pro contracts. The team set the record for the most regular season victories in school history with 43 and Scenic West Conference victories with 37. The team managed a 22-game winning streak and was a part of 34 consecutive home victories. Three Wildcats earned the distinction of Academic All-American led by Brooks Klein 4.0 and Sean Dwyer's 3.97 cumulative two year GPA's.

2010

The 2010 Wildcats had a tremendous season. The 2010 team set the (then) school record for wins during the regular season with 41 wins, breaking the previous mark set the season before of 39. The 2010 sophomore class also broke the school record for wins in a career with an astonishing 91 wins in two seasons. This broke the previous mark held by the 2009 class who earned 86 wins. In total, the 2010 sophomore class went 91-31 for a winning percentage of 75%. The 2010 sophomore class was also perfect in classroom with all 11 second year Wildcats graduating with A.A. degrees, bringing the two-year mark for on-time graduation to 21 of 22 (95%). This is believed to be the highest mark of any college baseball team at any level anywhere in the country!

Pitching and defense has always been the key to the Wildcats success, and 2010 was no different. The Wildcats allowed just 2.85 runs per game and had an ERA of 2.55 for the season. Sophomore pitcher Kramer Champlin led a very talented and deep pitching staff which included seven Division I signed sophomores along with two freshman who eventually signed DI scholarships with still another that signed a pro contract (in total 10 of the 11 Wildcats who toed the rubber earned DI scholarships or professional signing bonuses!). Champlin finished 10-2 with a 1.51 ERA and earned his second consecutive Region XVIII pitcher of the year award.

Under the leadership of infield Coach Jerahmie Libke, the defense behind the pitching staff outdid themselves becoming the first Wildcat team to lead the country in fielding percentage with a .972 mark. Pitching and defense allowed the Wildcats to sweep the #2 ranked CSN in April and won 5 of 9 contests on the year bringing the 5 year total against their in-state rivals to an impressive 25-16.

2009

The 2009 Wildcats set the school record for victories in a season (48), in which they eclipsed the old mark of 41 set in 2007. They also set the school record for winning percentage by winning 77 percent of their games. The Wildcats hosted their first super regional tournament after hosting the regional tournament for the second time in the program's four-year history. Western Nevada won three championships during the 2009 season including the Scenic West Conference Championship, the Region XVIII Championship, and the Western District Championship. The team finished third in the nation after falling twice in the World Series to the eventual champion, Howard College of Texas.

While the 2009 team had many outstanding performances by freshman players, especially on the mound, the team will forever be remembered for the outstanding leadership of its sophomore class. Their accomplishments included (then) most career wins (86) and highest winning percentage (72). Equally impressive were their collective academic accomplishments. The entire sophomore class of 11 inked scholarships to four-year schools including a WNC record eight to NCAA Division I schools. The total value of the scholarships exceed $185,000 which equates to more than $17,000 per player. Ten of the 11 sophomores graduated in two years, and eight did so with cumulative GPA's well over a 3.0.

2008

The 2008 Wildcats finished 38-20 overall and 29-19 in Scenic West Conference play. The Wildcats finished second in the always tough Scenic West Conference, just one game back after 40 scheduled contests. In the Region XVIII tournament, the Wildcats battled back after losing the first game, winning three straight games by a combined score of 36-12 before falling in the championship game 6-5. The Wildcats held a 5-2 lead with two outs in the bottom of the ninth before faltering. This was all accomplished despite the fact that the pitching staff returned just 36 innings from the year before. The 2008 team also won the NJCAA Spring Academic Team of the Year award for the 3rd consecutive year. Kyle Farrell was drafted in the 9th round and signed a contract a year removed from being an undrafted HS senior.

2007

The 2007 Wildcats finished with a then-school record of 41 victories and a fifth place national finish. The "road warrior" Wildcats battled their way to eight straight post-season victories to earn a Region XVIII Championship, a Western District Championship, and a berth in the NJCAA World Series, where they won two straight games, including a victory over No. 1-ranked New Mexico Junior College, the 2005 NJCAA national champions. The sophomore class in 2007 is more responsible for the ground work and ultimate continued success of the Western Nevada College baseball program than any other group of players before or after. By going to the College of Southern Nevada as the #3 seed and upsetting #1 seed and tournament host CSN in the Region XVIII tournament, the program was vaulted forward into the Nation’s elite despite being in just its second season. The sophomores were also a major part of the program winning two consecutive NJCAA Spring Academic Team of the Year Award in the programs first two years of existence.

2006

In their inaugural season (2006), Whittemore and his assistant coaches helped guide the Wildcats to the Scenic West Conference Championship. The Wildcats finished conference play with a 30-10 record, including season sweeps over three conference opponents. This was a tremendous feat considering that four Scenic West opponents were ranked in the NJCAA Top 20, AND the Wildcats were a first-year program which included only two sophomores. Five the programs pitchers the first year wound up pitching professionally including a future big leaguer and Justin Garcia who pitched as high as AAA.

Legendary Wildcats such as Tom Miller (programs first MVP), Kyle Bondurant (programs first Offensive Player of the Year), Jerahmie Libke (programs first Defensive Player of the Year), Chad Walling (programs first Wildcat Award winner), Taylor Mieras, Pat Grennan, Josh Brink, Cole Rohrbough, Dan Grubbs (programs first Reliever of the Year and Power Shagger of the Year), Justin Garcia (programs first Pitcher of the Year), and many others put Western Nevada Baseball on the map.



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