Japan put on an impressive show to defeat Australia, 8-1. The hosts hit three home runs and had three defensive double plays.
Japan finished the round robin undefeated and will face Puerto Rico in the first game of the Championship Round. Australia, as the second place team in Group B, will play against the USA.
Japan wasted no time to get on the scoreboard. With Eri Yamada (single) and Saki Yamazaki (walk) on board, usual suspect Yu Yamamoto got to aussie starter Ellen Roberts with a three run homer.
The long ball is the quickest way to add runs to the scoreboard and Japan is familiar with it. Eri Yamada, another usual suspect, led off the bottom of the third against reliever Amelia Cudicio with a laser beam over the fence in right center.
Australia got to Japan starter Yamato Fujita in the top of the fourth. Chelsea Forkin led off with a single and Jade Wall walked. Samantha Poole advanced runners then, with 2 outs, Taylah Tsitsikronis walked to load the bases. Fujita hit Carmelle Sorensen to force the first run for Australia and left for Yukiko Ueno. Japan’s star got Stacey McManus looking at the third strike and ended the threat.
Cudicio walked Natsuko Sugama to start the bottom of the fourth and Australia gave the call to Justine Smethurst. Yamato Fujita, now the designated player, welcomed her with a moon shot well over the center field fence for a two run homer that extended Japan’s lead to 6-1.
Japan made it a six inning game adding a couple more runs in the bottom of the sixth on a double to right by Misato Kawano.
The Netherlands beat South Africa, 11-1, and placed fourth in group A of the WBSC Women’s Softball World Championship. They will face Canada in an elimination game of the Championship Round. South Africa will play against China in the placement round.
The Netherlands took the lead as they scored two runs in the first inning off starter Madelein Bester on a couple of hits by Britt Vonk and Virginie Anneveld. The Dutch capitalized on a defensive error and didn’t need to look back.
The Netherlands combined 12 hits and broke the score open against reliever Nushka De Beer.
Ginger De Weert picked the win going four innings, allowing 2 hits and striking out five.
South Africa scored their lonely run, in the game and in the tournament so far, on reliever Marjolein Merkx.