USA Softball International Cup - Day Two Recap

July 11, 2018, 2:28 a.m. (ET)

IRVINE, Calif. – A hot day at the plate and one-hit performances in the circle keptboth rosters ofthe USA Softball Women’s NationalTeam(WNT) undefeated at the USA Softball International Cup.  USA Blue (Japan All-Star Series roster) postedan 8-1 (five innings) win over Venezuela while USA Red (World Championship roster) earned a 2-0, shutout win over China.

 

Click here for box scores from the USA Softball International Cup

 

USA Blue 8, Venezuela 1 (five innings)

Click here for a box score

 

Hannah Flippen (San Diego, Calif.) continued her hot-hitting ways, going a perfect 3-for-3 at the plate with four RBI and two runs scored asUSA Blue captured an 8-1 (five innings) win over Venezuela.

 

Flippen recorded her first multi-base hit of the game in the top of the first inning with a two out triple, but USA Blue was kept from scoring after a fly out to left field.  Jessica Moore (Sutter, Calif.) dealt the heat in the bottom of the frame, fanning two batters while a groundoutkeptthe game scoreless.

 

USA Blue got another runner on basein the top of the second when Courtney Gano (West Covina, Calif.) drove a ball to the right/center gap for a double, but was halted from advancing with a pop out for the third out of the inning.  Moore continued toissuestrikeouts,postingtwoalongwithinducinga pop out for a 0-0 gameafter two innings.

 

The offense got rolling for USA Blue in the third inning with back-to-back singles from Kelly Kretschman (Indian Harbour, Fla.) and Sis Bates (Ceres, Calif.) with one out.  On her first pitch of the next at-bat, Flippen delivered big for the offense with a shot over the center fieldfence, putting USA Blue up 3-0.  Venezuela cut the lead with a run of their own in the bottom of the third after a single and error put runners on the corners.  A double play on a ground ball allowed the runner at third to score, putting the game at 3-1,in favor ofUSA Blue.

 

USA Blue struck back in their next at-bat after a one out walk to Gano.  A sac bunt from Jazmyn Jackson (San Jose, Calif.) moved Gano to second for Jenna Lilley (North Canton, Ohio), whose ground ball was mishandled to allow Gano to score on the play.  With a 4-1 lead in the bottom of the fourth, Delanie Gourley (Lakeside, Calif.) entered the circle for Moore withtwo outs, issuing a strikeout to her one batter faced. 

 

USA Blue broke the game open in the top of the fifth, securing the runs they would need for the ultimate run-rule victory.  Bates led off with an infield single, swiped second base with a steal and scored on a single from Flippen for the fifth USA Blue run of the game.  Amanda Chidester (Allen Park, Mich.) followed with a double to plate Flippenandmake it 6-1, USA Blue,beforea single from Bubba Nickles (Merced, Calif.) put runners on the corners.  Two batters later, Jackson dropped a fly ball incenterfieldfor a single, plating Chidester and Kylan Becker (Miami, Fla.), who entered as a pinch runner for Nickles.

 

Needing just three outs to secure the win, Paige Lowary (Dallas Center, Iowa) entered the circle for USA Blue and shut theVenezuelaoffensedown.

 

At the plate, Bates and Kretschman joined Flippen with multi-hit performances.  Moore showed her veteran leadership in the circle, dishing out five strikeouts while allowing just one hit in her three and two-third innings pitched en route to the win.

 

USA Red 2, China 0

Click here for a box score

 

With 16-of-21 outs recorded via the strikeout, Monica Abbott (Salinas, Calif.) was simply lights out in the circle as USA Red picked up their second shutout victory of the USA Softball International Cup in a 2-0 win over China.  USA Red capitalized on the timely hitting of Haylie McCleney (Morris, Ala.) and Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.), who both picked up an RBI in the contest.

 

USA Red looked to strike early in the bottom of the first inning when Janie Reed (Placentia, Calif.) and Ali Aguilar (Orangevale, Calif.) hit back-to-back singles with one out, but a pair of fly balls were caught by the China defense to keep the runners at bay.

 

A two-run outing in the top of the second would be all the offense USA Red would need, with Kirsti Merritt (Lake Panasoffkee, Fla.) starting the rally with a walk.  Stealing second base with one out, Merritt advanced to third on a single from Aubree Munro (Brea, Calif.) and came around to score on a sac fly from Stewart.  Stewart would come back into the game as a courtesy runner for Munro on second base before a double from McCleney allowed Stewart to use her wheels to scoot around the bases for the second run of the inning.

 

Another three-up, three-down inning byAbbott and the defensebrought the potent USA Red offense came back to the plate.  Aguilar and Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.) would both reach on a pair of singles, but failed to cross the plate with USA Red keeping the 2-0 lead.

 

China broke up the no-hitter in the top of the fourth after a single from Chen Jia with two outs, but Abbott fired back with a strikeout to keep thetwo-runlead.

 

Three more USA Red batters reachedthe base paths through the next three innings, but the score remained2-0. A singlefrom Reedin the bottom of the fifth and a Moultrie single in the bottom of the sixth followed by a walk to Merrittput runners aboard, but all three were kept from scoring.

 

Abbott earned the complete-game win, pitching all seven frames with just one hit allowed and 16 strikeouts.  At the plate, Reed, Aguilar and Moultrie each had 2-for-3 performances while Merritt twice reached on walks.

 

Notable July 10 performances

 

Scrap Yard Fast Pitch joins USA Red as only undefeated team in Pool A

Scrap Yard Fast Pitchremainunbeaten after capturing a 3-0, shutout win over Chinese Taipei.  Scrap Yard starter Alexis Silkwood picked up the win in the circle, pitching six scoreless frames with three strikeouts while a home run from Tori Vidales knocked in all three runs.

 

Mexico edges out Venezuela for first win at USA Softball International Cup

A three-run, sixthinningpropelled Mexico to their first ‘W’ at the USA Softball International Cup.  Edging out Venezuela 3-2, three different Mexico batters recorded an RBI in the contest while Venezuela capitalized on a pair of doubles for their two runs.

 

Tickets are still available for the USA Softball International Cup, and can be purchased outside of Deanna Manning Stadium at the Bill Barber Park Ticket Booth.  For complete coverage of the USA Softball International Cup, including rosters, live stats, streaming and results log on to USASoftballInternationalCup.com.

 

About USA Softball

USA Softball is a 501(c)(3) not-for profit organization headquartered in Oklahoma City, Okla., and is designated as the National Governing Body (NGB) of Softball in the United States and a member of the United States Olympic Committee. One of the nation’s largest sports organizations, USA Softball sanctions competition in every state through a network of 69 local associations and has grown from a few hundred teams in the early days to over 150,000 teams today, representing a membership of more than 2 million.  USA Softball is dedicated to providing people of all ages the opportunity to play the game they love at a variety of levels by offering recreational, league, tournament and competitive play for fast pitch, slow pitch and modified pitch.  USA Softball annually conducts thousands of tournaments throughout the country including over 100 National Championships.  The USA Softball umpire program is among the nation’s largest and are widely known as the best trained umpires in the game. As the NGB for the sport of softball, USA Softball is responsible for training, equipping and promoting the six USA Softball National Teams that compete in events such as the Olympics, Pan American Games, World Championships and other international and domestic events. For more information on USA Softball, including its founding and history as the Amateur Softball Association of America (ASA), please visit, www.USASoftball.com.

 

About the World Baseball Softball Confederation

Headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland -- the Olympic Capital -- the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) is the world governing body for baseball and softball. WBSC has 202 National Federation and Associate Members in 143 countries and territories across Asia, Africa, Americas, Europe and Oceania, which represent a united baseball/softball sports movement that encompasses over 65 million athletes and attracts approximately 150 million fans to stadiums worldwide annually.

 

The WBSC governs all international competitions involving official National Teams. The WBSC oversees the Softball World Championships (Men, Women, U-19 Men, and U-19 Women), Premier12, World Baseball Classic, and Baseball World Cups (U-12, U-15, U-18, U-23 and Women's).

 

For more information, visit: www.wbsc.org.