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U.S. Men's National Team snaps 22-year medal drought with bronze medal finish at 2022 WBSC Men's Softball World Cup

Dec. 04, 2022, 10:13 a.m. (ET)

AUCKLAND, New Zealand – In what snapped a 22-year medal drought for the U.S. Men's National Team (MNT), the 2022 World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) Men's Softball World Cup ended in victory for the Eagles after a 2-0 win over world-ranked No. 1 Argentina clinched the bronze medal for Team USA. The win earned the Red, White and Blue its 10th overall WBSC Men's Softball World Cup medal - fourth in the bronze category - with the last U.S. podium finish happening at the 2000 Men's Softball World Cup in East London, Africa. 

After falling to Argentina earlier in the tournament, the U.S. claimed redemption over the defending World Champions behind a complete game shutout from Brad Kilpatrick. The lefty thrower totaled 13 strikeouts in the win, a tone that was set after escaping a bases loaded jam with three-straight K's in the bottom of the first inning. Kilpatrick and the U.S. defense limited the Argentina offense to six hits in the win while forcing seven stranded runs to keep Argentina scoreless for the first time in the tournament. 

The game remained knotted through the first four innings until a clutch go-ahead home run off the bat of Yusef Davis gave the U.S. a one-run edge followed by a pair of base hits from Blaine Milheim and Erick Ochoa to put runners in position for a fielder's choice RBI from Matt Palazzo to put the U.S. on top, 2-0. Despite a single and a pair of walks, the Argentina offense remained silenced through the final two innings with Kilpatrick sealing the U.S. victory via three strikeouts in the bottom of the seventh to earn Team USA's fourth bronze medal in program history - first in 22 years. 

The Eagles posted a 5-4 record through its quest to the WBSC Men's Softball World Cup with a 3-2 record through Opening Round followed by a 1-2 record through Super Round to edge the Eagles to its 10th Medal Round appearance in WBSC Men's Softball World Cup history. Scoring at least one run in every game, the U.S. offense combined for a .272 team batting average highlighted by Milheim (.394) and Jonathan Lynch (.462) - a feat that landed the two among the WBSC Men's Softball World Cup All-World Team. The U.S. sent nine homers out of the park throughout the tournament thanks to three off the bat of Milheim, two from Lynch and one from Ochoa, Davis, Cam Schiller and Matt Palazzo. A force to be reckoned with on the base paths, Davis was awarded the Most Stolen Bases award with three stolen bases throughout the week. In the circle, the pitching staff of Kilpatrick, Javier Caballero, Jerlin Rutt and Jon Gwizdala combined for 71 strikeouts in 59 innings pitched with Kilpatrick fanning 49 in 35.1 innings followed by Gwizdala with 19 K's in 13.1 innings pitched. 

The WBSC Men's Softball World Cup bronze medal caps the 2022 season for the U.S. MNT in historic fashion, adding another medal to the collection alongside five gold medals (1966, 1968, 1976, 1980 and 1988), one silver medal (1972) and three bronze medals (1984, 1992 and 2000). To learn more about the USA Softball Men’s National Team Program, visit USASoftball.com.