USA routs Texas 21-0
AUSTIN, TX -- A homecoming for USA left-handed pitcher Cat Osterman (Houston, TX), the USA Softball Women’s National team continued along its ‘Aiming for Athens’ tour posting a 21-0 win over the Texas Longhorns.
Currently taking an Olympic red-shirt year from Texas, the 6’2” hurler captured her sixth win of the tour pitching 3.2 innings in the mercy rule win. She allowed no runs, one hit and retired seven batters via strikeout. The fifth largest crowd in McCombs field history at 1,268, the victory pushed the U.S. team to a 17-0 record on the tour and continued the pre-Olympic tour win streak at 132.
“My heart was racing a little bit at the beginning,” Osterman said. “I was so excited to be back at McCombs and finally I adjusted and things ended up going well. It was really fun tonight and I received a great welcome from the fans.”
The U.S. offense was apparent in the victory as they combined for 21 runs with 23 hits, including 10 doubles. Turning on the power, they began in the top of the second where they scored 10 runs on eight hits. Catcher Jenny Topping (Whittier, CA) started with a single to left field followed by a walk to Lovieanne Jung (Fountain Valley, CA). A bunt single from Kelly Kretschman (Indian Harbour Beach, FL) advanced the runners before Jessica Mendoza (Camarillo, CA) connected on a towering sacrifice fly to centerfield for a 1-0 lead. And from there the Red, White and Blue never looked back. Speedster Natasha Watley (Irvine, CA) then connected on an RBI infield single to score Kretschman while Leah O’Brien-Amico added another run with a single up the middle. Batting leader Crystl Bustos (Canyon Country, CA) then drove the first of 10 doubles in the game down the left field line to plate Watley to give the U.S. a 4-0 advantage. Back-to-back walks then resulted in another run before Jung came to the plate for the second time in the inning. She blasted a three RBI double to left field to clear the bases before doubles from Krestchman and Mendoza completed the inning for a 10-0 lead.
A change of pitchers for the Longhorns didn’t change much as the U.S. bats continued to dominate the field adding seven more runs in the top of the fourth. Led by a Topping double to right center and a Jung single to center field, the U.S. spree continued as Kretschman recorded her first of three doubles in the inning. Three base hits followed by another Topping double down the right field line lit the scoreboard to 17-0 through four and a half.
The U.S. would add four more runs in the top of the fifth highlighted by doubles from Kretschman, Flowers and singles from Amanda Freed (Cypress, CA), Bustos, and Lisa Fernandez (Long Beach, CA).
Leading the U.S. bats was Kretschman who finished 4-for-4 on the night with one single and three doubles. Watley, currently hitting .500 on the tour, finished 4-for-5 while Topping was 3-for-4.
The U.S. squad will continue its stay in the Lone Star State as they travel to Waco, TX on Thursday March 11 for a double-header against Baylor. Game are scheduled for 5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. CST.
The Amateur Softball Association, founded in 1933, is the National Governing Body of Softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. The ASA has become one of the nation's largest sports organizations and now sanctions competition in every state through a network of 91 local associations. The ASA has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 240,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than three million. For more information on the ASA, visit www.asasoftball.com.
About USA Softball
USA Softball is the brand created, operated and owned by the ASA that links the USA Men’s, Women’s, Junior Boys’ and Junior Girls’ National Team programs together. USA Softball is responsible for training, equipping and promoting these four National Teams to compete in international and domestic competitions. The USA Softball Women’s National Team is one of the only two women’s sports involved in the Olympic movement to capture back-to-back gold medals at the Olympic Games since 1996. The U.S. women have also won seven World Championship titles including the last five consecutive.