Junior Men run rule Denmark
PARANA, Argentina – It just took five innings for the USA Softball Junior Men’s National Team to defeat Denmark 8-1 and move to 1-0 in pool play at the International Softball Federation (ISF) World Championships the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) and USA Softball announced today. Jerlin Rutt (Bernville, Pa) threw a complete game and picked up the win in his first international contest. While Austin Tuttle (Payson, Utah) led the team on offense going 2-for-3 with two doubles and three RBI on the day.
USA jumped to an early lead in the second inning when Tuttle hit a two run double that scored Tyler Johnson (Union, Mo.) and Spencer Yackel (Lake Crystal, Minn.). Three batters later, with Tuttle still standing on second and Jonathan Lynch (Cape Girardeau, Calif.) at first, Justin Wurtz (New Haven, Mo.) picked up a single of his own to give Team USA the 4-0 lead.
“We were able to jump out early and pick up some runs,” said Tuttle. “That was huge for us and I thought we did a great job of not letting up after we had the lead.”
Jerlin Rutt held the Denmark batters in check for the first three innings of the game allowing just one hit and no runs while striking out four. The visiting team was, however, able to get on the board in the top of the fourth after the lead-off batter walked to start the inning. In the next at-bat the base runner attempted to steal second and a wild pick-off throw overshot the baseman sending the runner around to third. With a runner in scoring position, a grounder to short stop was enough to bring him home making the score USA 4, Denmark 1 midway through the fourth inning.
Neither team managed to pick up any additional runs in each of their next at-bats and the score remained 4-1 entering the bottom of the fifth.
Mauro Olivarria (San Diego, Calif.) and Michael Lewis (Amboy, Minn.) led off the half inning for the Americans with walks and a Johnson single loaded the bases with no outs. Designated Hitter Jake Rutt (Ephrata, Pa.) stepped to the plate representing the game-winning run for the USA. The right hander came through for his team with a double to left-center field that scored all three base runners and to give them a 7-1 advantage. Two batters later, with Rutt still standing on second, Tuttle picked up his second hit and third RBI of the day, this one a walk-off, game winning double.
“I thought we had too many strike outs early in the game,” said USA Head Coach Tim Lyon. “Our guys may have been a little anxious to finally begin tournament play. But they did a great job of settling down and really looking for good pitches to hit. Later in the game we had a number of two-strike, base hits and it’s plays like that that help you win ball games.”
The Red, White and Blue will return to action at the ISF IX Junior Men’s World Championships on Saturday, November 3 when they face Singapore at 11:00 a.m. (CT). Please visit www.USAsoftball.comto follow live stats and see photos from all of USA’s games at the ISF World Championship.