A rain delay could not dampen the enthusiasm for Titan baseball and the parents who are in Omaha to watch their sons fulfill their lifelong dreams.
The anticipation for the Titans’ first game in the College World Series after a five-year drought has inspired fans to make this midwestern pilgrimage to cheer for a team that many thought had little chance of getting to Omaha.
But ask one of the player’s mothers, and she will tell you it is all worth it.
They have watched their sons grow up playing T-ball, Little League, high school and now on to one of the biggest stages of their lives. These mothers have shuttled their sons to hundreds of practices and games, cheering as their boys honed their skills. Omaha is one of the many rewards for their selfless support.
Kami Bryant ’91 (B.A. psychology) is Taylor Bryant‘s mother. Taylor started as the second baseman in the game against Vanderbilt and before the rain stoppage, he had a hit and batted in a runner.
“This was a dream of his and to see him achieve one of his biggest dreams, it just doesn’t get any better,” Bryant said.
A.J. Kennedy‘s mom, Nancy, when asked about her son making it to the College World Series, fought back tears thinking of those years of youth baseball and the hopes her son had for making it to Omaha. The Titan catcher also has been selected by the San Diego Padres in the MLB.
“What it is, is this,” Nancy Kennedy said while holding back tears of joy. “I’m speechless. It’s priceless.”
Charlaine Olmedo’s son David Olmedo-Barrera also made major contributions to the Titans’ success. He propelled the Titans to the national championship tournament with a solo shot to left field in the 11th inning of the Super Regional against Louisville. He has been drafted by Tampa Bay and among his many accolades, he was named the Big West Co-Player of the Year.
“This has been a lifelong dream of his,” his mother said. “The College World Series is the highlight of his entire career. It’s amazing.”
So what was her reaction when her son hit the home run that gave the Titans a berth in the College World Series?
“I was screaming and jumping around the living room,” she said. “That ball was absolutely fair.”
She said she is excited for her son to go on to the next phase of his career and is thankful that he will be playing for an organization like Tampa.
And she summed up the experience for all the parents, fans and players: “All of this has been awesome.”
Assistant Director of Media Relations/Social Media Michael Mahi is with the team in Omaha writing about CSUF’s College World Series experience via social media and the University’s news site. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, Storify and Instagram.