IVC ATHLETICS – A Tradition of Excellence
Since 1990, Irvine Valley College has been committed to maintaining a strong athletic and academic tradition. IVC competes as a member in one of the nation’s toughest community college conferences, the Orange Empire Conference (OEC).
Laser teams have have been successful from the start, winning two women's cross country state titles (1991 and 1993), a men's volleyball state title (1993) and a men's soccer title (1993) all within the first four years of the athletics program at IVC.
The Lasers have also accomplished a lot in recent years with the 2010-11 school year being a benchmark.
IVC won three state team championships (women's golf, men's volleyball and women's badminton), and earned its highest ranking ever in the standings for the NATYCAA Cup.
Irvine Valley placed in the top 10 for the first time ever in the National Alliance of Two-Year College Athletic Administrators (NATYCAA) Cup, finishing ninth in the state standings. It was the highest ranking for a non-football college on the list, which was made up of 105 community colleges in California.
“It speaks to the student-athletes who have chosen IVC and the coaching staffs’ ability to manage their programs at consistently elite levels,” said Irvine Valley Dean of Kinesiology, Health and Athletics Keith Shackleford. “It is a tribute to really dedicated people in the athletic program and our administration’s commitment to academic and athletic excellence.”
Irvine Valley won two state titles during the 2012-13 school year, capturing championships in women’s golf and women’s beach volleyball.
The 2014-15 school year was also special one for Irvine Valley. IVC won three more team state championships and recorded another five individual state titles - the most in a year in school history.
The men’s tennis team captured its first ever State Championship, after claiming Orange Empire Conference and Southern California Regional titles. The doubles team of Maxime Rumeau and Valentin Baize also claimed the state doubles championship.
Sophomore men’s tennis player Guillermo Ucelay was named the conference player of the year for the second year in a row.
Irvine Valley’s women’s volleyball team had the best season in school history. The Lasers won the Orange Empire Conference title for the fifth time ever, and then followed that up with its first state title. The Lasers went 27-0 in the process.
Sophomore women’s volleyball player Annie Mitchem was named the American Volleyball Coaches Association two-year college player of the year for the second year in a row. Mitchem had already been named the MVP of the Orange Empire Conference, all-state and All-American.
Women’s volleyball coach Tom Pestolesi was honored as the AVCA two-year California region coach of the year for the second year in a row. He was also named the conference’s coach of the year. And Mitchem, Marisa Doran, Hailey Jones, Kobi Pekich, Shaelyn Perez, Carleigh Petersen and Samantha Holdredge each moved on to play at four-year schools.
The Laser women’s beach volleyball team, featuring many of the volleyball players above, swept through the inaugural CCCAA State Championship at IVC last spring. The Lasers won the team state title on Friday and then had all three of their teams in the individual competition claim state titles on Saturday. Doran and Pekich won the No. 1 team title, Mitchem and freshman Emily Reinking took the No. 2 team championship and Holdredge and freshman Hailee Earnest captured the No. 3 team title.
Sophomore women's golfer Leleaga Meredith won a California Community College Athletic Association State Championship at Morro Bay Golf Course in the fall of 2014. She did so after finishing third as an individual a year before as a freshman. She shot 75 the first day and then followed that up with a round of 72 with three birdies and 12 pars on the second day for a total of 147.
Irvine Valley’s women’s basketball team also won a conference title and finished with 27 wins. The Lasers had one of the best-ever years in program history. The 27 wins was the second most in program history. The Lasers also made the Southern California Regional Final, rolled through the Orange Empire Conference, going 12-0 to win a title and racked up several impressive individual awards, including Breanna Turner and Jordan Coleman being named honorable mention All-Americans, Turner being picked all-state and the conference MVP and Julie Hanks earning coach of the year awards. Four players, Turner, Conerie Brennan, Karli Kato and Erika Pagkalinawan also signed to play at four-year schools.
Irvine Valley’s baseball team won four of its final six games to end the regular season, make the Southern California Regional Playoffs and ultimately advance to the Super Regionals. IVC, seeded 17th, won a single elimination playoff play-in game at LA Mission, 16-6. It was one of the biggest wins in the history of the program. IVC trailed, 6-0, heading into the top of the seventh inning, but scored two runs in the seventh inning and an amazing 10 runs in the eighth inning to rally for the victory. IVC finished with 20 hits in the contest. Sophomore pitcher Justin Zielinski was named all-Southern California after finishing with a record of 9-3 overall and set several program records.
And in the 2015-16 school year, Irvine Valley won five conference titles (men's soccer, women's volleyball, women's badminton, men's tennis and women's beach volleyball). The men's tennis team also captured its second straight CCCAA State Championship, the women's beach volleyball team finished second in the state and the women's basketball team reached the Southern California Regional Final for the second year in a row.
Individually, the team of Hailee Earnest and Emily Reinking won the beach pairs state title, Javier Callejo captured the men's singles tennis state title (IVC's first in school history) and the team of Bruno Figlia and Scott Paz earned the state doubles tennis title this past school year.