USA Women split opening day of Canadian Open FP International
OKLAHOMA CITY – The USA Softball Women’s National Team split a pair of games during their opening day at the Canadian Open Fastpitch International on Tuesday the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) of America and USA softball announced today. Team USA opened the tournament with an 8-0 (five-inning) run-rule over the Bloomington Lady Hearts before dropping a 9-2 (five inning) decision to Japan. Up next for the Red, White and Blue is Basque Country (Spain) at 11 p.m. CT today, which fans can view via live stream and live stats at USASoftball.com.
Game one: USA 8, Bloomington Lady Hearts 0 (5)
Jessica Moore (Sutter, Calif.) collected her first no-hitter of the season, pitching her way to a perfect game at Team USA's opening game of the Canadian Open Fastpitch International. Moore pitched five flawless innings for the U.S., tallying nine strikeouts en route to an 8-0 (five inning) win over the Bloomington Lady Hearts. From the plate, Hallie Wilson (Tustin, Calif.) led the charge for Team USA, going 2-for-3 with two RBI.
Moore collected three of her strikeouts in the top of the first inning, retiring the first three batters of the game. Haylie McCleney (Morris, Ala.) led things off for the Americans with a walk and advanced to second base on a single from Wilson. With two runners on, Lauren Gibson (Pasadena, Md.) hit a sac fly to left field to score McCleney and give the U.S. an early 1-0 lead. An error from the second baseman put Valerie Arioto (Pleasanton, Calif.) on first and advanced Wilson to third base when Taylor Hoagland (Flower Mound, Texas) singled to plate Wilson and advance Arioto one base. Jessica Plaza (Huntington Beach, Calif.) continued the outing for Team USA with a single to score Arioto and put USA up 3-0 after the first inning.
Moore continued to shine in the top of the second inning with two strikeouts and a groundout to Arioto at first base. Destinee Martinez (Corona, Calif.) led things off for Team USA in the bottom half of the inning with a single and advanced to third on a bunt from McCleney, who also reached safely. Wilson connected for her second single of the game to plate Martinez and McCleney. A single from Gibson moved Wilson to second base, but an overthrow at first prompted another opportunity for Wilson to cross the plate, but a timely throw from the right fielder got Wilson out at home. With Gibson on second, Arioto was hit by a pitch to put two base runners on for Team USA until Sam Fischer (Simi Valley) plated Gibson with a double. Arioto would later score on a sac fly from Hoagland to extend USA's lead to 7-0. USA added another run in the bottom of the third after Kellie Fox (San Diego, Calif.) led off with a single and scored on a sac fly from McCleney.
Game two: Japan 9, USA 2 (5)
USA was unable to carry over the momentum from their first game of the day, falling 9-2 (five inning) to Japan in their second game on Tuesday. An unusually off night defensively for Team USA, Japan capitalized on two U.S. errors and two wild pitches to claim the win over USA.
Jolene Henderson (Elk Grove, Calif.) got the start in the circle for Team USA, issuing a double to Japan's leadoff hitter before a groundout to first base advanced the runner to third. A sac fly from Misato Kawano plated the first Japan run before a strikeout ended the at-bat with Japan leading by one run. Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) led off for the U.S., advancing to first on an error by the pitcher but was later out at second after a fielder's choice from Raven Chavanne (Thousand Oaks, Calif.). A double play ended the inning with the U.S. unable to capitalize on a leadoff base runner.
Japan led off with another single in the top of the second inning until a single from Yukiyo Mine plated the run to put Japan up 2-0. Team USA closed the lead as Arioto led off the U.S. at-bat with a solo home run and was followed by a single from Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich.). Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.) then hit a triple to plate Chidester and tie the game at 2-2.
The third inning proved to be fatal for Team USA as two errors and five hits led to five Japan runs, two of which were unearned. Yu Yamamoto led off with a solo home run and a single from Kawano led to a pitching change for USA as Jaclyn Traina (Naples, Fla.) entered in relief for Henderson. An error from Stewart at second base put two runners on for Japan and a single from Haruna Sakamoto loaded the bases for Japan. A wild pitch plated one run for Japan, followed by a single to put them up 5-2 over the U.S. The second wild pitch of the inning plated another run for Japan and a sac fly from Mine extended the lead to 7-2.
USA would put a runner on base in the bottom of the third inning as Chavanne reached on a single with one out and stole second base, but a strikeout and fly out ended the opportunity for Team USA. The fourth inning was the first scoreless inning of the game as a double play ended another Japan rally and the U.S. was retired in order. Japan sealed the win in the top of the fifth after scoring two more runs off a passed ball and single.
After day one of the Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championship, Team USA moves to 1-1. They will return for another pool-play game at 11 p.m. CT on Wednesday when they face Basque Country (Spain). You can follow all of the action live by visiting USASoftball.com.
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 76 local associations. The ASA has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 165,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than 2.5 million. For more information on the ASA, visit http://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 three consecutive gold medals at the Olympic Games since 1996. The U.S. women have also won nine World Championship titles including the last seven consecutive as well as claimed six World Cup of Softball titles. For more information about USA Softball, please visit http://www.usasoftball.com.