USA Softball News USA Women Open up Ja...

USA Women Open up Japan Cup

Nov. 16, 2007, 11:46 a.m. (ET)

USA Women Open up Japan Cup with 4-1 Win Over China

YOKOHAMA, Japan – The USA Women’s National Team posted a 4-1 win over China to open play at the 2007 Japan Cup in Yokohama, Japan. All the pitching staff saw time with Jennie Finch (La Mirada, Calif.) earning the win in the circle.

The red, white and blue took the lead in the first inning when Caitlin Lowe (Tustin, Calif.) scored off a wild pitch after drawing a walk to reach first. Finch started in the circle and pitched two complete innings, allowing two hits with no runs.

Stacey Nuveman (La Verne, Calif.) started a three-run fourth inning when she drew the team’s third walk of the game. Kelly Kretschman (Indian Harbour, Fla.) singled to centerfield and would steal second to get in scoring position. An RBI single by Andrea Duran (Selma, Calif.) plated Vicky Galindo (Union City, Calif.) who served as pinch runner for Nuveman. Two more runs were scored when Kretschman scored on an error by catcher and Duran off a sac fly by Tairia Flowers (Tucson, Ariz.), giving the United States a 4-0 lead.

China avoided a shutout in the fifth inning when leadoff batter Zhang Lifang hit a double off Lisa Fernandez (Long Beach, Calif.), who came in the fifth inning after Cat Osterman (Houston, Texas) threw two innings with five strikeouts and no hits. LiFang scored off a double by Tan Ying to give China its only run of the game.

Alicia Hollowell (Suisun, Calif.) and Monica Abbott (Salinas, Calif.) combined to throw innings six and seven, respectively, allowing no runs to be scored.

The team combined for eight hits with Kretschman leading the way going 2-3 with one run scored.

Next up for the team is Australia tomorrow at 10:00 am/ local time.