Inland college notes: Nicky Cannon shoots for success as new UCR women’s volleyball coach

Nicky Cannon has been hired as the new women’s volleyball coach at UC Riverside.

Cannon, who spent the last three seasons as an assistant coach at Cal State Fullerton, becomes just the fourth head coach of the Highlanders since the program’s inception in 1970.

“We are incredibly excited to have coach Nicky Cannon join our athletics program and lead our women’s volleyball team forward,” UC Riverside athletic director Wesley Mallette said. “The ‘Coach Cannon Era’ is underway and I am fully confident in Nicky’s ability to lead our program to new heights.”

Mallette said the university conducted a national search and Cannon stood out.

“Nicky’s energy, enthusiasm, focus, track record of building student-athletes and understanding of what is required to lead our team forward, came across clearly throughout the search process,” he said.

Cannon was a key part of Cal State Fullerton’s back-to-back 10-wins seasons, and helped numerous Titans earn all-Big West Conference recognition.

“I am thrilled and honored to be the head women’s volleyball coach at UC Riverside, and I am thankful to Wesley Mallette for entrusting me with this opportunity and welcoming me to the UCR family,” Cannon said. “I cannot wait to lead this group of young women and build a team that will grow together, operate with confidence and poise, compete fearlessly and win in the Big West Conference.”

Cannon joined Cal State Fullerton after three year as the assistant coach for both indoor and beach volleyball at Cypress College, helping the Chargers to one indoor and two beach Orange Empire Conference titles and two CCCAA state tournament appearances.

Prior to Cypress, Cannon served as athletic director and volleyball coach at Christ Academy High School in Wichita Fall, Texas, from 2013-15. While in Texas, Cannon co-founded Zone-In Volleyball Academy (ZIVA), where she was club director from 2012-19.

“The is a dream opportunity for me and my family, and I am ready to lead UCR women’s volleyball forward as we begin a new era for the Highlanders,” she said.

UC Riverside was last in the Big West Conference with a 2-18 record and just 6-24 overall last season.


San Bernardino Valley College’s baseball team went on a three-week tear that saw the team rise above .500 for the first time this season.

Led by freshmen Nathan Campos-Jaramillo and Melchor Flores, the Wolverines (18-17 overall, 15-4 in conference) took two of three from Mt. San Jacinto College before sweeping Chaffey, Barstow and Victor Valley to win 10 consecutive games from March 26 to April 16.

Campos-Jaramillo (Kaiser High) and Flores (King) recently shared the Inland Empire Athletic Conference Player of the Week Award for April 4-10. Campos-Jaramillo leads the team in hits (43), average (.331) and doubles (16). Flores is batting .328 with 27 RBIs.

SBVC leads the conference standings heading into the final stretch but wraps the regular season with series against No. 2 Desert (17-5) and No. 3 Cerro Coso (13-8).


Cal Poly Pomona freshman pitcher Will Rudy pitched eight shutout innings to earn his third California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Pitcher of the Week award.

Rudy (5-1) needed just 87 pitches to complete eight innings in the Broncos’ 9-0 win over Stanislaus State last week. He yielded just two hits and struck out three with one walk. After walking the first batter he faced, Rudy retired 15 consecutive batters and faced the minimum through five innings.

He also earned the weekly award previously for a 12-strikeout gem vs. Chico State in early March, and earned it again after another 12-strikeout effort in a win against Sonoma State three weeks ago.

Rudy leads the CCAA with a 1.93 ERA and an opponent batting average of .178. He also leads the conference with 67 strikeouts.


The Cal State San Bernardino baseball team continues its resurgence under fifth-year Mike Nadeau and has won 20 games for the first time since 2016.

The Coyotes (21-17 overall, 17-11 in CCAA) recently split a four-game home series with Chico State and have mixed in far more wins this season than any in recent memory.

Kyle Csakan (Santiago) was recently named CCAA Player of the Week and is batting .333 with a conference-leading 17 home runs, 43 RBIs, a .868 slugging percentage and a whopping 1.298 OBP.

Deshawn Johnson leads CSUSB with a .373 batting average, 57 hits, 11 stolen bases and 37 runs scored.


UC Riverside women’s golfers Tiffany Le and Kate Villegas, who both finished Top 5 at the recent Big West Championships, have been selected first team All-Conference.

Villegas finished second overall in the Big West Championships in San Luis Obispo last weekend by carding a 69 in the second round. Le tied for fourth overall, marking the fifth time in the last six years that UC Riverside has had an individual in the Top 5 and the first time in program history with two in the Top 5.

Villegas’ second-place finish in San Luis Obispo was her best result during a season in which the sophomore turned in three Top-10 finishes.

Lee had a phenomenal freshman campaign, registering four Top 10 finishes in her final five tournaments and nine rounds below par, the third most in program history.

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