College of Charleston defeated the Catamounts, 6-2, on Sunday to win the series.
Bobby Moranda was officially introduced as the 10th different head baseball coach at Western Carolina on July 19, 2007. The former Georgia Tech associate head coach brings over 26 years of coaching experience - 18 of which comes from schools in the Atlantic Coast Conference - to WCU.
"Bobby Moranda is one of the most dynamic coaches in college baseball. He has been an important part of successful programs at such schools as Virginia, Wake Forest and Georgia Tech," said Western Athletics Director Chip Smith. "His career includes numerous conference championships and appearances in the NCAA post-season play, including two College World Series berths. We are very excited that Bobby, his wife Pamela and their family will be part of Catamount Athletics and Western Carolina University."
In six seasons at Western Carolina, Moranda has already posted signature victories over fourth-ranked Georgia Tech in the Yellow Jackets first-ever trip to Cullowhee, as well as over 24th-ranked Southern California (USC) on the program's first-ever trip to California. WCU has also secured road wins over nationally-ranked Clemson and twice at Tennessee -- sweeping the Tigers in the 2012 regular season marking the first single-season sweep in Catamount history.
During his first season at WCU, Moranda recruited and coached current Catamount second baseman Ross Heffley, who was the concensus Southern Conference Freshman of the Year in 2009 and was also a Louisville Slugger Freshman All-America selection. Heffley went on to be a first team All-America selection in 2011 and was drafted in the 18th round of the 2012 MLB Draft. Moranda also had Brent Greer named All-SoCon, with four players drafted out of WCU in the Major League Draft in '09.
During his third season, Moranda guided the Catamounts to 37 wins and a runner-up finish in the Southern Conference Baseball Championship. Two were named All-SoCon in pitcher Matt Benedict, who led the conference in ERA during the regular season, and Trevor Collias. Additionall, three were named to the all-tournament team as Ollie Goulder, Matt Johns and Brandon Johnson earned the nod.
Following the 2010 season, garnered WCU's Catamount Head Coach of the Year honor at the year-ending awards ceremony.
Since stepping foot in Cullowhee in 2008, 10 Western Carolina players have been drafted by Major League squads including seventh-round pick Nick Liles in 2009.
Moranda came to Cullowhee after having spent six seasons as the associate head coach at Georgia Tech where he also served a vital role in recruiting and worked extensively with the pitching staff. Prior to his stint with the Yellow Jackets, he spent six years in a similar role at Wake Forest (1996-2001) and was an assistant coach at both Virginia (1990-95) and his alma mater, Eastern Kentucky (1987-89). Overall, Moranda has been a part of 10 conference championships and 12 NCAA Tournament appearances as either a player or a coach.
Prior to WCU, a combined 19 players that Moranda either recruited or coached have gone on to careers in the Major Leagues. Twelve pitchers have been selected through the top five rounds alone of the Major League Baseball Draft under the tutelage of Moranda. He also helped recruit and coach Matt Wieters, the fifth pick of the 2007 MLB Draft out of Georgia Tech. In all, Moranda has coached over 60 players who have been selected in the baseball draft, 20 of which were undrafted out of high school.
During his six seasons at Georgia Tech, Moranda helped guide the Yellow Jackets to four, Top 10 finishes, four Super Regional appearances, three ACC titles and a pair of appearances in the NCAA College World Series in Omaha. In 2002, Georgia Tech won a school-record 52 games en route to the CWS thanks in part to a pitching staff which set school records for "Fewest Walks per Nine Innings" (2.54 per 9 IP) and best "Walk to Strikeout" ratio (2.90 to 1) while boasting the best team earned run average since 1994 (4.06) and recorded its most shutouts (6) since 1997. He was also a part of an ACC record 25-straight conference victories with the Jackets.
Amidst the run to the College World Series, Moranda's work with the Georgia Tech pitching staff was more evident than ever as the starting rotation of Kyle Bakker, Chris Goodman and Brian Burks combined for a 5-0 record and 0.77 ERA in NCAA regional play, while the entire staff combined for a 2.40 ERA and held opponents to a .208 batting average.
A year later, in 2003, Moranda's pitching staff helped Tech win the ACC championship by sweeping the first triple-header in conference history. The Yellow Jackets defeated North Carolina, Florida State and NC State on the final day of the tournament to capture the league title. Tech's 2003 pitching staff again ranked as one of the better staffs in recent GT history. The Yellow Jackets allowed the fewest hits per nine innings in the last 10 years, while posting the second best ERA in that span.
Prior to making the move to Georgia Tech in 2001, Moranda spent the previous six years at Wake Forest where he helped lead the Demon Deacons to three ACC Championships in his last four seasons. For his work, he was recognized by Baseball America magazine in January 2001 as one of the country's "Rising Stars" in the college baseball coaching ranks.
After helping lay the groundwork for his first two seasons at Wake Forest as head assistant coach, Moranda helped the Demon Deacons to back-to-back ACC Championships in 1998 and 1999, and a third title in 2001. He helped build the Demon Deacon program into one of the best in the nation through his recruiting efforts and his on-field work with the Wake Forest pitching staff and defense. His pitchers tossed two no-hitters, the school's first in 60 years.
Moranda's recruiting classes were annually ranked among the nation's top classes, while his pitching staffs have attracted national attention from both collegiate baseball experts and professional scouts. His recruiting efforts at Wake Forest resulted in six Freshman All-Americans, including the 2001 National Freshman of the Year, the 2003 ACC Player of the Year, and the first collegiate draft pick in 2003.
In 1998 his Demon Deacon pitching staff attracted national attention by throwing five complete games in the six-game ACC tournament. The feat helped Wake Forest win the 1998 ACC Championship and advance to the NCAA South I Regional, the Deacons' first NCAA appearance in 21 years. Moranda and the Deacons followed that 1998 performance with a five game sweep through the 1999 ACC Tournament, a trip to the NCAA Super Regional and a top-10 national ranking.
In his six years at Wake Forest, Moranda consistently developed outstanding pitchers. Ten of his pitchers were selected in the Major League Baseball amateur draft, including six that advanced majors including current players David Bush with Milwaukee Brewers and Mike MacDougal of the Kansas City Royals. Five pitchers earned All-America honors, while his pitchers earned all-ACC accolades seven times in his last five years.
His experience with top pitchers extends back to his days at the University of Virginia, where from 1990 to 1995 Moranda helped lay the groundwork as recruiting coordinator that led to the Cavaliers 1996 ACC Championship team.
During his six years in Charlottesville as Virginia's head assistant coach and recruiting coordinator, the Cavs produced more professional players than the program's previous 100 years combined. Prior to Moranda's arrival, Virginia had never produced a first-round draft pick or a first-team All-American. By 1996, however, the Cavaliers had two first round picks among 23 combined players drafted and two first-team All-Americans. Moranda's star pupils and recruits were outfielder Brian Buchannan and pitcher Seth Greisinger. Buchannan has played with the San Diego Padres and Greisinger, who starred on the 1996 U.S. Olympic team, reached the Major Leagues in 1998 with the Detroit Tigers.
As a player, Moranda was an All-Region performer at Harper Community College in Illinois and was part of back-to-back championship teams before accepting a scholarship to Eastern Kentucky. The native of Palatine, Ill., batted .307 with 20 home runs and 86 RBI in two seasons at EKU, helping the Colonels win two consecutive Ohio Valley Conference championships and a top-30 national ranking. The Colonels made two consecutive NCAA Regional appearances during Moranda's playing career and were just two games away from advancing to Omaha for the College World Series in 1985.
After gaining his undergraduate degree in broadcast management, Moranda stayed at Eastern Kentucky as an assistant coach for three years while working toward his master's degree in recreation administration, and EKU made another NCAA Regional appearance during his tenure. During that time, Moranda also coached an American Legion summer team in Palatine that featured Major League catcher Todd Hundley.
Moranda and his wife Pamela have been married for 19 years. The couple has two children, daughter Taylor Jade, and son Breyson Kade.
Moranda's Former Players in Baseball
Kevin O'Sullivan - Head Coach, Univ. of Florida
Danny Borrell - Pitching Coordinator, New York Yankees
Eric Schmidt - Asst. Director of Operations, New York Yankees
John Hendricks - Scout, Toronto Blue Jays (Named Scout of the Year)
Matt Price - Area Scout Supervisor, Kansas City Royals
Brian Buchanan - Minor League Manager, Kansas City Royals
Scott Daeley - Kent State Univ., Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator
Victor Menocal - Baseball Agent, Excel Sports Management
Jason Cook - Baseball Agent, Excel Sports Management
Michael Holmes - Asst. Director of Scouting, Oakland A's