ORANGE, Calif. – The No. 10 Chapman University baseball team dropped the series opener with No. 19 Cal Lutheran 12-3. Senior Tyler Peck moved surpassed 200 career strikeouts in the loss and moved into the top-10 for strikeouts in Chapman's Division III history.
Peck fanned 10 batters for the second time this season and ran his career total up to 206 strikeouts. He went six innings but gave up five runs on nine hits as Cal Lutheran took command early in the series-opener. After two scoreless frames to start the game, the Kingsmen smacked two triples in the third to fuel a three-run, five-hit inning. They put up two more in the fourth for a 5-0 lead.
Sophomore Mack Cheli put the Panthers on the board with an RBI-single into left field in the fourth. In the sixth, Cheli sparked a Panthers' rally with a triple that went off the top of the center field fence and skipped away into right center. He came home on senior Jarod Penniman's sacrifice fly. Junior Joe Jimenez followed with a single and went all the way to third when a throw sailed into left center as he was trying to steal second. He came around to score on freshman Brad Shimabuku's single.
The Panthers created opportunities with a runner on base in every inning, except the third, but left 11 runners stranded. The Kingsmen committed five errors but were backed by a complete game performance from Justin Fong. He struck out three, walked a pair and limited Chapman to six hits.
The Kingmen's offense touched up Chapman's relievers with seven runs in the final three innings, including a four-run ninth to seal the win. Tanner Wright had three hits, drove in a pair and scored twice to lead the lineup that saw all nine players get at least one hit, including six multi-hit games.
The series between the two nationally-ranked teams head up to Thousand Oaks, Calif. tomorrow to conclude the SCIAC series with an 11 a.m. doubleheader.
By Steven Olveda
Sports Information Director