LA VERNE, Calif. — The La Verne softball team lost two SCIAC games in a row for the first time this season, dropping the first game of a doubleheader against Chapman on Saturday, but Hayley Jaquess threw a shutout in the second game to snap the brief skid and kept the Leopards on top of the SCIAC.
La Verne moves to 18-6 in SCIAC play (25-9 overall) and remain one game ahead of Claremont-Mudd-Scripps with four games left to play. Chapman is 16-18 overall and 10-14 in the SCIAC.
The Leopards couldn't crack Chapman starter Sarah Hartmann in the first game, managing one run on six hits in a 3-1 loss. The Panthers got all the runs they needed in the third inning on a two-run double by Sarah Sumida. The Leopards responded immediately in the bottom half of the inning on an RBI single by Sienna Kendricks but that was all they would muster.
Staring at their first SCIAC losing streak of the season, the Leopards turned to Jaquess in the second game and the senior delivered. Jaquess scattered eight hits and issued just one walk while striking out three to lead the Leopards to a 4-0 win.
Alexis Schiff did bulk of the damage on offense, going 2-for-3 while driving in three runs.
The Leopards broke the scoring seal in the bottom of the third after loading the bases to start the inning. Schiff hit a bloop single to right field to cash in Rachel Ogata and Carly Condon, who came around to score from second with heads-up baserunning.
La Verne tacked on a pair of insurance runs in the fifth on back-to-back two-out RBI hits by Schiff and Kendricks to take a 4-0 lead.
The Panthers threatened to mount a rally in the top of the seventh as Christine Lo Verde reached on an error and Michaela Foisy singled with one out, but Jaquess got the next to batters to ground out to seal the win.
The Leopards are back in action next Friday at Whittier.