Team USA Struggles to Win Against Japan
COLUMBIA - Team USA had a hard day on Sunday, falling twice to Team Japan in the final day of the Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championship. The US played a total of three games throughout the day. Mizzou's Chelsea Thomas took to the mound in game one against Japan. Thomas pitched for 4.1 innings, striking out eight of the 18 batters faced. She also allowed two hits, one run and two walks before being relieved by Baylor's Whitney Canion.
Canion pitched the remaining 1.2 innings: allowing twos, three runs, two walks and three errors. Team USA fell to Japan 4-3 in 7 innings.
The USA faced Australia in game two, the winner would move on to face Team Japan in the championship game. Michigan's Jordan Taylor took the mound for the US. Taylor pitched all seven innings only allowing one run off four hits. She also struck out eleven of the 25 batters faced. Designated hitter Rhea Taylor helped Team USA in game two getting two runs and two hits during her four at bats. USA beat Australia 8-1 in 5 innings.
In the championship match between the USA and Japan it was a show of Big 12 pitchers. Oklahoma's Keilani Ricketts started the game for the US pitching 1.1 innings. Ricketts gave up five hits, three runs and three errors, walking one and only striking out one. Mizzou's Chelsea Thomas, who relieved Ricketts, pitched for 2.2 innings. Thomas also gave up five hits, three runs and three errors but struck out three. Baylor's Whitney Canion came in to relieve Thomas and pitched the remaining 3 innings. Canion allowed one unearned run but no hits and struck out five batters. Team USA fell to Japan 7-0 in 7 innings.
Team USA will have a shot at redemption against Japan when both teams head to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to play in the World Cup of Softball July 21-25.