Pair of homers blast Chapman into championship game

Conner Larkin celebrates after hitting a triple
Conner Larkin (photo by Larry Newman)

ORANGE, Calif. – A pair of three-run homers powered the Chapman University baseball team to a 10-3 win over top-seeded La Verne to stay alive in the SCIAC Tournament. The Panthers advance to the championship round of the SCIAC Tournament against the second-seeded Redlands Bulldogs.

Senior Conner Larkin and freshman Trevor Marrs each smacked three-run homers in the win as the Panthers never trailed. The Panthers' offense has caught fire over the last 19 innings, scoring 20 runs over that span.

Chapman took the long road to the championship round of the tournament and put together some early runs to fuel their second win in a row in an elimination game. After a hit by pitch and double to start the game, sophomore Aaron Wong sprinted home on a wild pitch for the game's first run. Larkin later gave the Panthers a 3-0 lead as his grounder was mishandled, allowing two runs to score.

La Verne chipped its way back in with a run in the second and third but Larkin hit his big three-run homer in the bottom of the third to put the Panthers back up four runs at 6-2.

Senior Joey Harmon allowed just three runs on seven hits over five and one-third innings to pick up the win. Junior Jonathan Hernandez tossed the final three and two-thirds to get the save. He shutout the Leopards over the final 11 outs, allowing just three hits and striking out one.

With the Panthers up 7-3, Marrs delivered his insurance blast in the eighth inning put Chapman comfortably up seven runs heading into the final inning.

The Panthers will need to beat Redlands twice on Sunday in order to claim the SCIAC Tournament Championship and the automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament as the Bulldogs advanced through the winner's bracket, beating Chapman on Friday and La Verne today.

First pitch for tomorrow's game is scheduled at 11 a.m.



By Steven Olveda                                        
Sports Information Director

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