USA Juniors fall to Japan 4-0 in at Worlds
Ont. – Heavy rainfall proved to be a foe for the USA Softball Junior Women’s
National Team as they fell 4-0 to Japan at the International Softball
Federation (ISF) Junior Women’s World Championship (JWWC) the Amateur Softball
Association (ASA) of America announced today. The game was called in the top of
the seventh inning due to the inclement weather after two rain delays halted
proud of this team and how far they’ve come,” said Head Coach Tairia Flowers.
“They have so much talent and personality and it showed during our time
together. For us to only give up runs in one inning out of the entire
tournament, I think it says a lot for our team and what we’re capable of.
Unfortunately we fell short, but we fought back. Up until the game was
called, we were ready to compete and take the game back, but unfortunately that
opportunity didn’t happen.”
Hawkins (Anderson, Calif.) got the start in the circle for the USA. The left
hander threw four and a third innings, giving up four run on four hits.
Hawkins, who’s JWWC record moved to 4-1, struck out six Japanese batters in the
game. Erica Nunn (Apex, N.C.) entered in relief in the fourth, issuing two
strikeouts and no hits.
Nakano went the complete game in the circle for Japan only giving up one hit
while striking out nine USA batters.
game was scoreless through the first five innings of play. Japan’s Enomoto put
their first base runner on in the top of the first on a miscue by the U.S.
offense. Okuda followed with a single but Hawkins closed the top half of
the inning with the two runners stranded. Emily Crane (Troy, Mo.) would
respond in the bottom of the first with a walk, but two groundouts and a
strikeout retired the inning.
would go down in order in the second inning via two strikeouts and a
groundout. The Red, White and Blue would get another base runner in the
bottom of the second when Jessica Plaza (Huntington Beach, Calif.) was hit by a
pitch, but once again the U.S. offense failed to produce and Plaza was left
stranded at first.
would put another two runners on base in the third inning as two singles put a
runner in scoring position, but Hawkins produced a strikeout and Mysha Sataraka
(Honolulu, Hawaii) caught a pop up to end the Japanese threat for the second
top of the fifth inning proved to be the downfall for the U.S. defense as Japan
put two runners on via the bunt. With a runner on first and second, a
groundout pushed the two runners into scoring position. Okuda then sent a
single to center to score the two runners and put Japan up 2-0. Aoki then
sent a long ball over the right field fence to extend the lead to 4-0. With
the home run, Nunn came into the game with one out, and retired the Japan
U.S. would load the bases in the bottom of the fifth as Plaza, Danica Mercado
(Temecula, Calif.) and Haylie McCleney (Morris, Ala.) received a walk,
hit-by-pitch and another walk put the first runners in scoring position for
Team USA, respectively. Nakano then pitched three-consecutive strikes to
bring her team back to the plate. Nunn would retire Japan in order,
bringing the U.S. up-to-bat for what would be their last time.
the plate, the USA struggled for the first time in the JWWC as they failed to
produce a hit until the sixth inning when Crane connected for a single.
Sataraka followed with a walk, but the U.S. couldn’t get anything going as two
strikeouts and a pop up ended the inning.
heavy rain started to pour for the second time in the game, ISF officials and
the field crew met to discuss the possibility of continuing the game with
another rain delay. Unfortunately for the U.S., that opportunity didn’t
happen and the game was called after the sixth inning with Japan walking away
with the default 4-0 win.
the loss the 2013 USA Softball Junior Women’s season comes to a close. USA
finished the World Championships with a 9-1 record (Venezuela dropped out of
the JWWC so the U.S. won that game via forfeit), outscoring their opponents
finished the season with the highest batting average (minimum of 10 plate
appearances) for the USA at .583. As a team the USA batters hit for a .443
average on the year.
the circle the USA pitching staff finished with a combined 0.47 ERA, with
Hawkins receiving only 2 earned runs in the JWWC for a 2.33 ERA.
in to this summer I was really nervous,” said Emily Crane. “I’ve made some
lifelong friendships and being able to play with these girls made it so much
more fun. The opportunity to represent my country is something I’ll never
forget, and although I wish the outcome was different, I’m proud of how much we
accomplished as a team in such a short amount of time.”
will now turn its sights toward the 2015 ISF Junior Women’s World
Championships, which are scheduled to be held in Oklahoma City, Okla. at the
ASA Hall of Fame Complex. To find out more information on how to become a
member on the 2015 Junior Women’s National Team, please visit USASoftball.com