USA Schutt Elite blanks the Triple Crown Force, 4-0
SURREY, B.C. Lisa Dodd (San Diego, Calif.) and Alicia Hollowell (Suisun, Calif.) collaborated on a two-hit shutout on Monday morning to lift USA Schutt Elite to a 4-0 triumph over the Triple Crown Force at Softball City. With the win, USA improves to 2-1 at the 2004 Canada Cup. After Dodd worked the first three frames, Hollowell retired all 12 batters she faced, totaling nine strikeouts, to pick up her first decision of the tournament. Caitlin Benyi (Scottsdale, Ariz.) paced the offensive attack by going 2-for-3 with two runs and an RBI triple.
“We received great pitching in this game,” said Head Coach Jay Miller. “I thought that Alicia dominated, which is a good sign as we work toward the end of the week. I was disappointed in how we performed offensively, as we struggled early. Although we were able to generate more offense later on, we need to do a better job adjusting to the opposing pitcher. Hopefully, we can continue improving throughout the tourney.”
Benyi led off the bottom of the second for USA Schutt Elite with a base-hit up the middle and was sacrificed to second by UCLA teammate Jodie Legaspi (Garden Grove, Calif.). Benyi stole third base and came scampering home on a throwing error by catcher by Jennifer Schunke to put her squad on the board. Andrea Duran (Selma, Calif.) earned a two-out walk from Stephanie Klaviter but was thrown out attempting to swipe second base.
Emily Zaplatosch (Scottsdale, Ariz.) provided USA with an insurance run with a two-out single in the fifth that plated Duran. After earning her second free pass of the game, Duran advanced on a grounder by Kristie Fox (San Diego, Calif.). Zaplatosch followed with a line drive that eluded second baseman Jen Burford, boosting USA Schutt Elite’s cushion to 2-0. Catalina Morris (Sonoita, Ariz.) was then hit by a pitch, moving pinch runner Jackie Rinehart (Reno, Nev.) to second and spelling the end of Klaviter’s action in the circle. Reliever Jessica Strichland set down pinch hitter Vanessa Iapala (San Diego, Calif.) on strikes to hold her team’s deficit at two runs.
USA tacked on two more runs on four hits and an error in the sixth to finalize the margin at 4-0. Caitlin Lowe (Tustin, Calif.) started things by legging out an infield hit and wound up on third after a stolen base and a throwing error. Benyi launched a one-out RBI triple over the right fielder’s head and Legaspi followed with a single into right to balloon the lead to 4-0. Strichland yielded a single to Duran before being replaced in the circle by Cassidy Maine, who had Fox ground into a double play that ended the stanza. USA Schutt Elite will complete the day’s action by facing the Buffalo Bison’s (2-0) at Cloverdale Athletic Park at 3:30 p.m.