CLEARWATER, FL, USA – The WBSC Jr. Women’s Softball World Championship is down to three teams in the quest for Gold. Japan and Puerto Rico will face each other in the Bronze medal game, before the winner has to battle USA for The Title of World Champion.
In the first semi-final game, USA defeated Japan 4-1 to advance to the gold medal game. Japan’s loss pushed them into the bronze medal game.
In the second semi-final game, Puerto Rico defeated Canada 6-5 to face Japan in the bronze medal match.
In the Placement Round, Dominican Republic and Philippines will meet before the winner will face Mexico in the Placement final tomorrow.
Canada v Chinese Taipei
8-1 (6 innings)
Canada stayed alive in the world championship defeating Chinese Taipei handedly in the first Championship Round game of the day.
Chinese Taipei opened up the game’s scoring in the 2nd inning, scoring their only run. Szu-Chi Chu led the inning off walking and then advanced to third on a sacrifice by Tzu-Lin Chiang and a passed ball. With no outs, Yu-Ling Huang punched the ball up the middle to plate Chu. But Canada responded in the bottom half of the inning to score four. Maria Palmegiani reached base on a walk and was replaced by pinch-runner Alexis Huggart. Rebecca Monaghan then hit a two-run homer to bring the score to 2-1. The following batter, Amanda Janes, then singled up the middle and was driven in off Abbey Fortin’s triple and a two-out single by Alysse Volpe plated Fortin for the 4-1 lead.
In the 3rd inning, Canada added another three runs as Palmegiani led off with a base hit. Zoe Hicks followed and reached second on a fielder’s choice by Monaghan. Chinese Taipei really got in trouble, loading the bases with only one out as Janes was hit by a pitch. Fortin took advantage singling down the left field line to plate Hicks. An Emma Adams sac-fly then scored Monaghan before Alysse Volpe poked the ball into right field but the throw to home was late and Janes scored. Volpe tried to advance to second on the play, but Chinese Taipei tagged her out to end the inning down 7-1.
Canada ended the game in the sixth due to the run-ahead rule as Fortin homered over the left field fence for the 8-1 win.
Win: Kara BILODEAU
Loss: Ya-Ting TU
Canada will play today at 7:30pm against Puerto Rico.
Chinese Taipei has finished the world championship in 5th place.
Puerto Rico v China
Puerto Rico blanked China 7-0 in a Championship Round elimination game, hitting the ball well with 13 base hits.
Puerto Rico scored the only run they needed in the bottom of the 1st inning as Ariella Jackson singled down the left field line with two outs. Janiliz Rivera then followed with a single to center plating Jackson.
In the 4th inning, Puerto Rico scored three more runs as Rivera started the inning off with a solo home run. Jaimie Hoover then doubled and scored on Odalys Cordova’s double. Another double two batters later by Adriana Otero scored Cordova. With only one out, Kayla Jensen singled to move Otero to third, who was caught stealing to end the inning up 4-0.
The 5th inning gave the Boricuas two more runs. Geana Torres hit a lead-off single, who stole second and advanced to third on a botched dropped third strike. Hoover proceeded to single to plate Torres. The bases became loaded on a fielder’s choice to get tag Sanchez out at the plate. But Chinese Taipei walked another batter, allowing Tina Velazquez to score a run and bring the game to 7-0.
Puerto Rico then ended the game due to the run-ahead rule in the 6th when Torres hit a one-out infield single. Jackson reached base on an error and both runners advanced on a passed ball. Now with two outs, Hoover reached base on a single to score Torres. Puerto Rico now stays alive to play Canada, with the winner advancing to the bronze medal game.
Win: Allison MARCANO
Loss: Xiaofan JIN
Puerto Rico will play today at 7:30pm against winner Canada.
China has finished the world championship in 6th place.
USA v Japan
In the first of two semi-final games, each team is guaranteed to medal in the world championship. The game determined if they would advance directly to the gold medal game, or would have to play first in the bronze medal game.
USA’s Hannah Adams opened the game with a walk and made her way to 3rd due to an illegal pitch and single by Nicole Bates. Bates was then caught stealing to eliminate a runner in scoring position. With a 0-2 count, Madilyn Nickles pushed a single to left field to plate Adams for the early 1-0 lead. But Japan answered in the bottom of the inning, as Azumi Takahashi ripped a triple to deep right center field with one out. The next batter, Reina Matsumoto, punched the ball through the infield to score Takahashi to tie the game up.
USA retook the lead in the second with a lead-off homer by Jessie Harper to go up 2-1. The Americans then shut done Japan at their at-bat to retain the lead.
In the 3rd inning, Nickles blasted the ball over the center field fence to extend the lead to 3-1. The home run adds Nickles to the record books as she ties the record (5) set by USA’s Stacey Nuveman (1995) & Alyssa Palomino (2015).
USA threatened again the following inning when Harper singled up the middle and advanced on an Alissa Dalton hit. Harper advanced to third when Elissa Brown popped out to right field, but a strike out ended the opportunity.
Japan continued to struggle against the American pitching, never reaching scoring position. But USA did not let up as one mistake can cost any team playing Japan. So in the 7th, USA added a final run to ensure the win. Brown led off with an infield hit and advanced to second through a sacrifice down the first base line. After Nickles was hit by a pitch, Baylee Klingler hit to third but Ayaka Kono could not complete the play cleanly allowing Brown to score. Alexis Allan was then hit by a pitch to load the bases with two outs, but Harper flew out to end the inning and earn the eventual 4-1 win.
Win: Giselle JUAREZ
Loss: Marin ASAI
Save: Holly AZEVEDO
USA will play in the Gold Medal game tomorrow at 11:30am against Winner of the Bronze Medal game.
Japan will play in the Bronze Medal game tomorrow at 9:30am against Puerto Rico.
Canada v Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico edged out Canada in a close match to advance to the Bronze Medal game against Japan tomorrow. The match-up will be a repeat of the previous Jr Women’s World Championship held in 2015.
In this year’s semi-final game, Canada struck first scoring two runs in the top of the 1st inning. Rebecca Jones reached on a one-out single to right field. Grace Messmer then ripped the ball into right center for a RBI triple to score Jones. Maria Palmegiani then singled up the middle to plate Messmer. But Puerto Rico tied the game up at their at-bat. Geana Torres reached base on a fielder’s choice and was pushed home on a home run over the right field fence by Ariella Jackson.
In the 2nd inning, Canada had runners in scoring position but could not capitalize. But Puerto Rico did, scoring four runs. Cordova Odalys hit a single right up the middle and reached second on Francesca Torraca’s base hit. The bases then became loaded as Canada could not field Adriana Otero’s grounder cleanly. Another infield error allowed Geana Torres to reach base and push Odalys home. The next batter, Jackson, reached on a fielder’s choice to load the bases again as Canada got the lead runner out at home. But Janiliz Rivera doubled to center field to score Otero, Torres, and Jackson and bring the score to 6-2.
In the 4th inning, Canada started a comeback as back-to-back walks to Alysse Volpe and Jones and a Messmer single loaded the bases with one out. Maria Palmegiani took advantage of the situation and punched the ball up the middle scoring Volpe and Messmer.
Canada brought the game within one in the 5th inning when Abbey Fortin hit through the infield for a single. After a put-out, Amanda Janes walked for runners on 1st and 2nd. With one out, Emma Adams singled to plate Fortin and bring the game to 5-4.
In the 6th, the Canadian’s had the bases loaded with no outs and the win within reach. However, a line drive to shortstop and a head-ups throw to third completed the double play for Puerto Rico. Canada would load the bases again but a ground out ended the inning with no damage done. The Boricuas went on to win 5-4 and secure a guaranteed medal.
Win: Alexina MORA
Loss: Bri AGUILAR-BEAUCAGE
Puerto Rico will play tomorrow at 9:30am against Japan in the Bronze Medal game.
Canada has finished the world championship in 4th place.
Ireland v Peru
Ireland has now won three games in a row, defeating Peru in the day’s first game. Teresa Griswold and Ciara Sullivan led the team in run production, batting in two each. Claire Blount was the lone batter to have multiple hits with two singles. Makenzie McGrath earned her second win of the championship pitching the complete game allowing one run on three hits, while striking out four.
Win: Daniela RUBIO
Loss: Makenzie McGRATH
Ireland will play tomorrow at 9:00am against Korea.
Peru has finished the world championship in 19th place.
Korea v Argentina
Korea has won their third straight game as well to stay alive in this year’s world championship in the Placement Round. The Asian nation scored two runs in the first inning and never looked back, scoring additional runs in each inning except two. Argentina got on the board scoring one run in the 2nd and tried to stage a comeback in the 6th to score three but Korea held on to earn the win. Song Hee Jung led the offensive charge going 3-for-3, including a triple, while driving in two runs and scoring herself once. Yeon Choe earned the win pitching the complete game allowing four runs on nine hits.
Win: Yeon J CHOE
Loss: Sophie FARIGLIANO
Korea will play tomorrow at 9:00am against Ireland.
Argentina has finished the world championship in 20th place.
Italy v Brazil
5-4 (8 innings)
Italy was forced to come back from behind to defeat Brazil 5-4 in extra innings in a win or go home scenario. Brazil jumped ahead scoring one run in the 1st and two runs in the 3rd before Italy started to chip away. In the 4th inning, the European’s scored one and then tied the game up in the sixth. In the top of the 8th, Elisa Princic was placed on the second and immediately advanced to 3rd when Alessandra Rotondo singled to left. Francesca Cumero then singled into center to allow Princic and Rotondo to score bringing the game to 5-3. Gabriela Da Silva started the inning off for Brazil on 2nd. Following two strike-outs, Valeria Comosako hit an infield single plating Da Silva. But Italy fielded a grounder cleanly to win the game 5-4.
Win: Sara RIBOLDI
Loss: Tammy SHIROMA
Italy will play today at 7:00pm against Dominican Republic
Brazil has finished the world championship in 13th place.
Dominican Republic v Netherlands
Dominican Republic defeated Netherlands 5-3 to stay alive in the world championship. The Dominicans got on the board first scoring one run in the bottom of the 1st inning. In the third inning, the Netherlands went ahead scoring three, only for Dominican Republic to tie it up in the bottom half of the inning. The Caribbean’s then retook the lead in the 6th to score two and eventually win the game. Jayla Perez led her team to victory with a RBI double and scoring once. Angelina Pascual was credited with the win allowing three runs on eight hits, while striking out four.
Win: Angelina PASCUAL
Loss: Nicole VAN EIJL
Dominican Republic will play today at 7:00pm against Italy.
Netherlands has finished the world championship in 14th place.
Mexico v Philippines
Mexico’s Yeraldin Carrion pitched a perfect game in a 1-0 win over Philippines to advance directly to the Placement Round final. Carrion faced only 21 batters in the 7 inning game while fanning five. The game’s only run came in the 4th inning. Eliyah Flores doubled down the left field line to lead the inning off. After advancing to third on a passed ball, Flores scored when Paula Valles hit a sacrifice fly to left field.
Win: Yeraldin CARRION
Loss: Royeve PALMA
Mexico will play tomorrow at 11:00am against the winner of Dominican Republic/Philippines in the Placement Final.
Philippines will play tomorrow at 9:00am against Dominican Republic.
Dominican Republic v Italy
Dominican Republic jumped out to gain the lead in the 1st inning scoring three runs. After two scoreless innings, Italy scored one but was matched by Dominican Republic for a 4-1 game. Italy then scored one run in the top of the 5th, but the Caribbean’s scored four to gain a comfortable 8-2 lead. Italy scored the final run of the game in the 6th but it was not enough to win. Alexandra Mena homered, while Jayla Perez and Nelia Peralta each doubled for Dominican Republic. Rosa Perez earned the win, pitching four innings allowing two runs on seven hits.
Win: Rosa PEREZ
Loss: Federica TAGLIAVINI
Save: Katherine SUGILIO
Dominican Republic will play tomorrow at 9:00am against Philippines
Italy has finished the world championship in 12th place.