ORANGE, Calif. – The Chapman University baseball team rolled past the visiting Castleton 10-2 this evening at Hart Park. Senior Conner Larkin hit a grand slam in the bottom of the sixth to lead the Panthers to victory.
The Spartans started the scoring in the bottom of the first, as sophomore Matt Braman was hit in by a single from senior Jonathan Lindau. Chapman's junior ace Joey Harmon struck out the next batter and forced a groundout to end the top of the first with just one run allowed.
The Panthers tied it up in the bottom of the second when junior Jarod Penniman was able to score on a wild pitch. It wasn't until the fourth that Chapman was able to take the lead. Freshman Henry Zeisler doubled to left center, scoring sophomore Joe Jimenez from first. Zeisler advanced to third on an error by junior third baseman Mitchell Caron and scored when senior Gavin Blodgett singled up the first base line.
Sophomore Austin Merrill entered the game for Harmon in the top of the fifth, striking out two and helping pick off a runner at second to end the top of the inning. An error from Lindau allowed Penniman to score and left junior Trevor Willits on third. Jimenez stepped up to the plate and went yard, scoring Willits and increasing Chapman's lead to five.
After junior Tristan Kevitch was walked with one out in the bottom of the sixth, Larkin stepped up to the plate with the bases loaded. The senior hit a bomb out of the park, sealing the Panthers' fifth victory of the season.
Chapman rotated five pitchers through the lineup. Harmon earned the win, allowing one run and striking out seven. Freshman Cody Turner faced nine batters in two innings, allowing just one hit while striking out four. Senior Justin Stream was perfect on the night, going 3-for-3 with one run.
The Panthers head back to Hart Park on Friday, Feb. 23 at 2:30 p.m. to host Pomona-Pitzer in the first of a three-game series.
by Katie Bell
Sports Information Assistant