Men’s National Team posts 12-run fourth inning in 12-4 comeback victory over Denmark

June 19, 2019, 5:05 p.m. (ET)

Havlíčkův Brod, Czech Republic – With their backs against the wall and down, 4-0, heading into bottom of the fourth inning, the USA Softball Men’s National Team exploded with 12 runs to take the lead and ultimately secure the 12-4 (five inning) victory over No. 11 Denmark in Game 6 of the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Men’s Softball World Championship (MSWC). With the win, Team USA improves to 4-2 in pool play and guarantees their spot in the quarterfinals.

 

“The boys really came through and answered when we needed it most,” said Head Coach Gregg Leather (Staten Island, N.Y.). “Tony (Mancha) didn’t have his usual command today and going down 4-0 and removing our ace isn’t a comfortable position to be in. We responded with a 12-run inning, the likes of which I have never seen before. Scoring nine runs before recording a single out was amazing to witness. Duane (Weiler) came in, picked up Tony and did a nice job finishing the game. I’m very proud of the guys, it was a total team effort. We have a quick turnaround and play Venezuela early tomorrow but it feels good to have locked up a spot in the playoff round.”

 

Both sides stranded at least one runner through the opening two innings, with Jonathan Lynch (Cape Girardeau, Mo.) leading off the bottom of the first with a single to left field. Tony Mancha (Las Cruces, N.M.) got the start for the U.S., striking out one and walking two, while the defense fielded backed him up to keep the Denmark scoreless until the third inning.

 

Denmark got their No. 1 and No. 2 batters on with a hit by pitch, while a flyout resulted in runners on the corners. A double to centerfield drove in a run before a groundout to first allowed the runner at third to score and put Denmark on top, 2-0.  The U.S. responded by loading the bases in the bottom half of the frame after a walk to Erick Ochoa (Imperial, Calif.), single from Matt Ratliff (American Fork, Utah), and walk to Jeff Nowaczyk (Midland, Mich.) but a fly out to right field ended the inning. 

 

Blasting a two-run shot past the left field fences, Denmark extended their lead to 4-0 and Duane Weiler (Richland, Pa.) would enter the circle for the U.S. However, the game was far from over as the Red, White and Blue took control in the bottom half of the fourth, beginning with a leadoff single from Gil Saenz (El Paso, Texas).

 

Yusef Davis (Long Beach, Calif.) walked before a single from Lynch drove in Saenz from second. Cam Schiller (Prescott, Ariz.) tripled to clear the bags and put the U.S. within one run of Denmark at 4-3. Ochoa doubled to left field to make it a tie ballgame, before Matt Palazzo (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) homered on a fly ball past centerfield to give the U.S. a 6-4 lead. With no outs and a pitching change for Denmark, the bats stayed hot as Ratliff singled and stole second before touching home on a double from Nowaczyk. A walk to Nick Mullins (Toms River, N.J.) called for another change in the circle for Denmark, but an RBI single from Saenz in his second plate appearance of the inning made it 8-4. Two outs later, the U.S. added to their lead after Schiller walked to load the bases and Ochoa plated the three on a double to right field. Ahead 11-4, Palazzo and Ratliff hit back-to-back sharp grounders towards Denmark’s second baseman who was unable to snag them, allowing Ochoa to score and make it 12-4.

 

Following a 35-minute fourth inning per the WBSC and three outs away from clinching a spot in the playoff round, Weiler and the U.S. defense retired the side on a pair of strikeouts and groundout for the 12-4 (five innings) victory over No. 11 Denmark. Ochoa led the team with four RBI while Schiller and Palazzo finished with two apiece.

 

Team USA returns to action tomorrow to face No. 8 Venezuela, who also has secured a spot in the playoffs, at 10:30 a.m. (3:30 a.m. CT). The winner will secure the No. 3 seed, while the loser will be seeded No. 4 and have to face Japan. 

 

Click here to see the complete schedule for the United States

 

The 16 teams that are competing in the WBSC Men’s World Championship are: Argentina, Australia, Botswana, Canada, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, USA and Venezuela.

 

Currently ranked No. 6 in the world, the U.S. is looking to improve upon a sixth-place finish at the 2017 WBSC World Championship in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada, where the team finished with a 6-3 record. Team USA last stood on the podium at the 2000 edition in East London, South Africa.

 

Click here for more information on the 2019 WBSC Men’s World Championship

 

MEDIA: For more information on the WBSC Men's World Championship, please contact media@wbsc.co.
 
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 through a network of Local Associations, which includes all 50 states and select metro associations.  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.