ORANGE, Calif. – After helping Coach Laverty to his 400th career win on Friday night, the Chapman University baseball team swept Occidental College on Saturday to earn a SCIAC Tournament berth. The Panthers rallied from an eight run deficit to defeat the Tigers 12-11 in game one and picked up a 14-5 win in game two to earn the No. 2 seed.
Game 1: Chapman 12, Occidental 11
Trailing 11-6 in the eighth inning sophomore Anthony DeNiro sparked a six run rally with a leadoff single to left field to help the Panthers to the game one victory. The sophomore hit in the winning run in the eighth following a homer from junior Jared Love whose two-run shot tied the game 11-11. DeNiro finished the game 3-for-4 at the plate scoring two runs and recorded the winning RBI.
Senior Wyatt Hahn recorded his first victory of the season tossing the last three innings of the game. The senior was nearly perfect retiring nine straight batters.
The Tigers offense was led by Graham Pimm who drove in five runs on three hits and helped the Tigers to their early 8-3 lead.
Game 2: Chapman 14, Occidental 5
The Panthers came out swinging in the second game scoring 10 runs in the first two innings. Chapman posted a quick two runs in the first with back-to-back-to-back doubles from junior Gavin Blodgett, Love, and sophomore Justin Stream.
Occidental rallied with a pair of runs to tie the game 2-2 in the second, but Chapman responded with an explosive eight run effort to take the lead 10-2. Chapman added two more in the fifth and another pair in the seventh to earn the 14-5 victory.
Sophomore Matt Mogollon improved to 5-1 after tossing six innings for Chapman. Mogollon recorded eight strikeouts and walked just two batters.
This is the Panthers third trip to the SCIAC Tournament since joining the SCIAC in 2013 and second consecutive berth. After earning the sweep over Occidental, Chapman claimed the No. 2-seed in the tournament. The Panthers (25-12 overall, 16-8 SCIAC) will host the No. 3-seed Redlands (25-14 overall, 16-8 SCIAC) Friday at Hart Park at 3 p.m.
by Raquel Rinauro
Sports Information Assistant