USA shuts out Czech Republic
Brampton, Ont. — The USA Softball Junior Women’s National team continued to shut down its opposition at the International Softball Federation (ISF) X Junior Women’s World Championship (JWWC) with a 13-0 decisive victory in four innings over the Czech Republic on Tuesday morning. Winning pitcher Erica Nunn (Apex, N.C.) gave a solid performance from circle, tossing three complete innings with eight strikeouts and allowing no hits. Jailyn Ford (Hot Springs, Va.) entered in the fourth inning to finish the game, collecting two strikeouts in her flawless performance. The U.S. moves to 2-0 in play and will return tomorrow for a double header match up with Puerto Rico before facing host country Canada.
From the plate the U.S. recorded 13 runs on 13 hits and was led by Mysha Sataraka (Honolulu, Hawaii) who was 2-for-2, both of which were three-run home runs. Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.) and Emily Crane (Troy, Mo.) were right behind with Stewart going 2-for-2 and Crane going 3-for-3 and one RBI apiece.
To lead off the first inning, Haylie McCleney (Morris, Ala.) walked, then advanced to third on back-to-back stolen bases. Stewart followed with an additional base on balls before Crane connected for a single. With the hit, Crane gave the U.S. a 1-0 lead, scoring Danica Mercado (Temecula, Calif.), who entered the game for McCleney. Lee Ann Spivey (Palm Coast, Fla.) kept the offense going for the U.S., driving in a two-run single to give the Red, White and Blue a 3-0 lead. Stewart and Crane led off the second inning with a pair of singles, bringing cleanup hitter Sataraka to the plate. Sataraka, who walked in her first at-bat, connected for the USA’s first home run of the JWWC, pushing the lead to six.
“Our team came in to today’s game with the mentality to play hard,” said Sataraka. “We kept our composure and came out together as a team, which really showed on the field.”
Spivey started the third inning with a triple and Andrea Hawkins (Bay City, Texas) followed with an infield single. Two more runs were added thanks to an Ali Aguilar (Orangevale, Calif.) two-run double. That prompted a pitching change for the Czech Republic, who replaced starter Barbora Skopkova with Jana Furkova. Mercado sent a long ball to deep right center, scoring Aguilar and recording the second triple of the inning. Two more singles set up another opportunity for Sataraka, who notched her second home run of the game to give the U.S. a 13-0 lead.
“The team jumped on the Czech Republic pretty early,” said Head Coach Tairia Flowers. “We stayed in the game and continued to work on our game, like going opposite field and reading the defense. The girls did a great job of staying focused throughout all four innings.”
The U.S. pitching staff continues to stifle its opponents, combining for a total of 19 strikeouts over eight innings of work. Outscoring opponents 23-0, the U.S. is batting .564 as a team and has a 1.00 slugging percentage. Every hitter on the roster has recorded a hit except Jessica Plaza (Huntington Beach, Calif.) who has drawn two walks in three at-bats. Sataraka leads the team with eight RBI while Mercado leads the team with four runs scored.
Team USA takes the field again tomorrow afternoon with their first doubleheader of the ISF JWWC. They face Puerto Rico at 4:30 p.m. EDT before taking the field against the host country Canada at 7:30 p.m. EDT. Please visit USASoftball.com to follow live stats, get the links for live streaming and see photos from all of USA’s games at the ISF World Championship.