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Japan wins Softball 2016 Japan Cup with victory over USA

posted Sep 7, 2016, 9:12 PM by Unknown user

Japan wins Softball 2016 Japan Cup with victory over USA

TAKASAKI CITY (Japan) — Japan won softball’s 2016 Japan Cup via the run-ahead rule, with USA suffering a 9-1 five inning loss. This marks their second Japan Cup title, after winning the inaugural edition in 2005.

Australia claimed third place with a 4-1 win over Chinese Taipei.



Japan 9 – USA 1

The U.S. looked to strike early in the top of the first inning after Kelsey Stewart was hit by a pitch with one out.  But Japan was able to keep Stewart at first, getting a ground out and a strikeout to keep USA off the board.  Japan would have a four-run outing in the bottom of the frame, capitalizing on a pair of walks and back to back doubles by Nozomi Nagasaki and Yu Yamamoto.

USA would respond in the top of the second inning as Delaney Spaulding hit a solo home run to make it a 4-1 ballgame.  Responding with a two-run home run by Eri Yamada, Japan extended their lead in the bottom of the second.  Adding another run in the bottom of the third by Hitomi Kamabata, Japan held a 7-1 lead through three innings of play.

The U.S. was unable to get things going again offensively until the top of the fourth inning when Jazmyn Jackson led off with a single to left field.  That burst was halted, however, after a line drive to the third baseman, a strikeout and a stolen base attempt by Jackson.

Japan closed the game out early in the bottom of the fifth off the bat of Misato Kawano, who hit a two-run shot.

Fujita Yamato earned the win for Japan, while Jessica Moore suffered the loss for the U.S.

Australia 4 – Chinese Taipei 1

The Aussie Spirit struggled early against strong pitching by Ying-Hsin Lin, who kept the game scoreless through three innings.

Chinese Taipei scored the first run of the game in the fourth inning on a solo home run by Chia-Yi Chen.

But Australia answered in the bottom of the inning when Stacey Porter was walked on four pitches and pushed to second off Taylah Tsitsikronis’s sacrifice. Rachel Lack also drew a walk, and the bases were loaded when Clare Warwick walked.

Porter scored Australia’s first run of the game on Samantha Poole’s fielder’s choice grounder, then Tara Speakman gave her team the 3-1 lead with a single that scored Lack and Warwick.

That was all the run support pitcher Kaia Parnaby would need. In seven innings she allowed just three hits and one run, with eight strikeouts and only one walk.

Poole added an insurance run in the sixth inning with a home run to left field, capping off a great game in which she also provided the defensive highlight with a stunning diving catch in the fifth inning.

With a 4-1 lead going into the seventh inning, Parnaby forced two ground outs and struck out the final batter to end the game.