ORANGE, Calif. – The Chapman University baseball team fell to the visiting Whitman Blues in the second game of a best-of-five regional round of the 2019 NCAA Division III Baseball Championship. Senior Mason Collins started on the mound for the Panthers, striking out eight batters in his first complete game of the season.
Collins went the full eight innings, allowing just two runs. The Blues scored the tying and go-ahead runs in the bottom of the sixth. With two on and one out, senior Jake Wishart hit a hard ball to left field. The ball took a bad hop, sailing over senior Tristan Kevitch's head to kick all the way to the wall. Both runners came in to score to give Whitman a 2-1 lead.
After a scoreless first inning, junior Joe Jimenez stepped up to the plate. The catcher walked, advancing to third on a wild pitch with junior Kevin Gregersen at the plate. With a runner in scoring position, Gregersen hit a dribbler to second base, beating out the throw to first while scoring Jimenez from third to put the Panthers up 1-0 early.
Chapman racked up six more hits but left five runners on base in the final seven innings and were unable to come back after the Blues took the lead in the sixth.
Whitman's sophomore pitcher Thomas Craven also threw a complete game, striking out five batters in a one-run gem. Senior Tristan Kevitch went 3-for-4 with three doubles but was unable to score a run.
The Panthers and the Blues head back to Hart Park tomorrow morning at 11 a.m. to play the third game of the best-of-five series. The series is tied 1-1 after the first day of competition. The fourth game will be played 45 minutes after the completion of game three.
by Katie Bell
Sports Information Assistant