USA Women fall to Japan in Canadian Open Fastpitch International final
OKLAHOMA CITY – The USA Softball Women’s National Team went 3-2 and finished second in the playoff portion of the Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championship in Surrey, British Colombia, Canada this past weekend the Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball announced today. Team USA started bracket play falling to Canada 10-6 but bounced back to win three-straight including a 9-2 decision over Canada in the semifinals to earn a spot in the championship versus Japan. The USA Women struggled from the plate in the finals as they fell 7-0 in five innings.
With a couple days off, the USA Women’s team will meet up for a tour stop exhibition game in Waldorf, Maryland, July 29 before departing to train in Azzano, Italy for a week before the International Softball Federation (ISF) Women’s World Championships in Haarlem, Netherlands August 15-24. You can follow all of the action live by visiting USASoftball.com
Championship: Japan 7, USA 0 (Five Innings)
Monday’s final included perhaps the biggest rivalry in all of softball as Team USA took the field versus the Japanese National Team for the tournament championship. Japan struck in the first inning when Yukiyo Mine singled to score Yu Yamamoto and Eri Yamada. The 2-0 score held until the top of the fifth inning when Japan’s bats came to life as they scored five more runs on five hits to take a 7-0 lead into the bottom of the inning. Needing to score to avoid a run rule, Team USA again struggled from the plate as they managed just one hit in the at-bat.
Sayuri Yamane earned the win racking up five strikeouts in the contest and pitching 4 2/3 innings of shutout ball. Jolene Henderson (Elk Grove, Calif.) picked up the loss for Team USA as she was credited with six runs on five hits.
Team USA finished play at the Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championship with a 9-3 record.
USA 9, Canada 2 (Five Innings)
Looking for payback, Team USA found themselves squaring off with Canada for the second time in the playoffs on Monday with the winner earning a trip to the championship to face Japan. With eight runs in the first three innings, Team USA left no doubt about the eventual outcome. A RBI singles by Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich.) and Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.) in the second inning fueled the USA offense early as they cruised to 9-2, five inning run rule. Chidester racked up three RBI on three hits in the game.
Nevins moved to 2-0 in the playoffs as she picked up the win for Team USA. Nevins allowed just two runs over 2 2/3 innings of play. Karissa Hovinga was credited with the loss for Canada.
USA 10, Mexico 0 (Three Innings)
On Sunday night, the USA Softball Women’s National Team busted the game open early versus Mexico with six runs on two hits and an error in the bottom of the first. Moore earned the start in the circle and kept the Mexican batters hit less through the first two innings.
In the bottom of the second, Team USA added four more runs to their lead to push the score to 10-0 over Mexico. Sam Fischer (Simi Valley, Calif.) led the way offensively with two hits and two RBI in the contest.
Despite giving up her first hit of the game in the third, Moore kept Mexico off the board and Team USA cruised to the 10-0, three inning shutout.
USA 5, NJCAA All-Stars 0
On Sunday, Nevins set the tone for Team USA as she tossed six scoreless innings, giving up just one hit as she carries Team USA to a 5-0 win over the NJCAA All-Stars. Haylie McCleney (Morris, Ala.) was hot from the plate going 2-for-4 and scoring two runs. She singled in the first and tripled in the third inning.
Shyanne Saladino took the loss for the NJCAA All-Stars. She lasted the whole seven innings allowing seven hits and striking out three USA batters. The win propelled Team USA forward to a matchup with Mexico later in the evening.
Canada 10, USA 6
In the opening game of bracket play, Canada jumped up early scoring four runs on three hits in the first inning off of USA starting pitcher Sara Nevins (Pinellas Park, Fla.). Team USA plate their first run in the bottom of the second when Kellie Fox (San Diego, Calif.) hit a sac-fly to left field scoring Valerie Arioto (Pleasanton, Calif.) from third. The Americans tied the game with three runs in the third and took the lead when Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) hit a fly ball to left field scoring Fox from third.
Jaclyn Traina (Naples, Fla.) entered the pitching circle for Team USA to start the fifth but lasted just four batters after surrendering four Canadian runs on three hits. Jessica Moore (Sutter, Calif.) entered in relief and after giving up a three run homer, managed to stop the scoring barrage and end the Canadian at-bat. Lauren Gibson (Pasadena, Md.) got one run back in the bottom of the fifth but the Americans couldn’t manage much more. Both teams went scoreless in the sixth and seventh innings and Canada advanced in the winners bracket as Team USA fell to play the NJCAA All-Stars. Sara Plourde earned the win for Canada and Traina was assessed the loss.
Headquartered in Plant City, Florida (USA), the ISF is a member of the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC), the world governing body for the sport which is recognized by the International Olympic Committee and SportAccord (formerly the General Association of International Sports Federations). Softball (women’s fast pitch) made its Olympic debut at the 1996 Games in Atlanta. There are 127 affiliated countries in the ISF and millions of participants in the sport worldwide.
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.