On a crisp, blustery Santa Cruz afternoon on Feb. 5, 2019, Danny O'Reilly was a one-man wrecking crew in West Valley's 14-5 win over Highway 17 rival Cabrillo. The sophomore outfielder was 3-4 with six RBI on a grand slam and a two-run single as the Seahawks were unable to stop him.
After graduating from WVC in 2019, O'Reilly took his talents to the University of Toledo, an NCAA D1 school in the prestigious Mid-America Conference. In the pandemic-shortened 2020 seqason, O'Reilly started 12 of the Rockets' 13 games, finishing with a .250 average, five RBI, three doubles and a homer. On March 6, just before the season ended, O'Reilly had a 2-4, three-RBI, two-runs-scored outing at UAB.
The Portland, OR native completed his West Valley career with a .236 AVG, a .332 OBP, a .344 SLG%, 24 RBI, 11 doubles, two home runs and 22 runs scored. He led the 2019 Vikings with 11 extra base hits and 22 RBI. But, it was that windy day in Santa Cruz that cemented his place in Viking lore.
O'Reilly obliterated a scoreless tie with a towering grand slam to center as the Vikings got all the runs they would need in a six-run third. He pushed the lead to 14-1 with a two-run single in the fifth. A month later, O'Reilly helped the Vikings defeat De Anza 11-9 with a pair of doubles and two RBI.
The Rockets graduated only six seniors on a 38-man squad, and with Danny O'Reilly anchoring the outfield, the future is bright in Toedo, Ohio.