U-18 Men’s Softball World Cup Day 7: Mexico secure spot in Sunday's World Championship Final; All Super Round teams still in medal contention

U-18 Men’s Softball World Cup Day 7: Mexico secure spot in Sunday's World Championship Final; All Super Round teams still in medal contention
Canada's 10-5 win over USA on Friday confirmed Mexico's place in the final while Japan needs to beat the hosts on the last day of the Super Round on Saturday to book a spot in the final with them.

Hosts Mexico, despite losing to Venezuela 4-1 on the penultimate day of the WBSC U-18 Men’s Softball World Cup Super Round, punched their ticket to Sunday’s World Championship Final thanks to other results on Friday, especially USA’s 10-5 loss at the hands of Canada.

The other five Super Round teams remain in contention for Sunday’s medal games with Japan holding a 3-1 win-loss record (same as Mexico) followed by Canada and USA at 2-2 and Australia and Venezuela 1-3. Mexico can’t finish worse than second place in the Super Round standings having already beaten USA and Canada.

Singapore vs Argentina (PR)3 - 10Box score
Australia vs Japan (SR)0 - 6Box score
New Zealand vs Czechia (PR)4 - 9Box score
Canada vs USA (SR)10 - 5Box score
Venezuela vs Mexico (SR)4 - 1Box Score

Saturday’s last day of the Super Round sees Australia play USA, Venezuela take on Canada and Japan play Mexico needing a win to guarantee a spot in the final.

Mexico will play the Final on Sunday, 19 November, at 17.00 local time. This will be Mexico's first WBSC U-18 Men's Softball World Cup Final, and their second medal in history. Their only medal was a bronze from Edmonton 1981, the inaugural edition of the event.

Friday's results also assured Japan a place in Sunday's medal games. Saturday's games will determine whether Japan will play the Bronze Medal Game or the World Championship Final. Japan has the most medals in the history of the event with 11, including three world titles, four silver medals and four bronzes.

In the Placement Round, Argentina beat Singapore 10-3; while Czechia topped New Zealand, 10-4 to secure seventh place in the final standings.

In the first Super Round game of the day, Japan defeated Australia, 6-0, improving their record to 3-1 and securing their presence in Sunday's medal games. Kanta Aso pitched a three-hit complete game, while Ruito Ono and Ryuki Tsuda combined for five RBIs from the top two spots in the lineup, leading Japan to victory. Aso was named Player of the Day.

The second game at Fernando Ortiz saw Canada and USA going head-to-head in a key matchup for the Super Round. The Canadian lineup exploded with five runs in the top of the sixth inning, including a pair of homers by Joseph Weiler and Riley Good. It proved to be the difference in the game, which finished 10-5 for the red and white squad. Canada and USA are now tied with a 2-2 mark in the standings. Canada's win over USA secured a spot in the Final for Mexico.

In the night game, Venezuela handed the host team their first loss of the tournament, behind a stellar performance by their pitcher Yohenrik Torres. Torres struck out five in a complete-game effort, giving up seven hits and one run, earning his first win in the World Cup in his first start.

Fans around the world can watch all the action on GameTime. The WBSC OTT platform offers Tournament and Daily Passes to watch the WBSC U-18 Men’s Softball World Cup.

Super Round

Venezuela vs Mexico

Yohenrik Torres pitched a gem for Venezuela against Mexico, one of the most dangerous lineups in the competition, to lead his team to a 4-1 victory. Torres struck out five in a complete-game effort, giving up seven hits and one run. It was Torres' first win in the World Cup, in his first start.

Venezuela earned their first win of the Super Round and remain alive in their quest to clinch a medal in the tournament.

Top 6th - Two more runs for Venezuela. They put two runners on scoring position with one out, after a single from Yeferson Colmenarez, a walk and a wild pitch that advanced the runners. The Mexican pitcher Jose Contreras struck out Manuel Lagarde, but his catcher Christian del Valle made a throwing error after a dropped third strike, allowing Colmenarez to score from third. Orlando Rodriguez extended Venezuela's lead with an RBI single to right field. Venezuela is now leading 4-1.

Bottom 5th - Mexico get back a run. Shortstop David Diaz drives in Emiliano Solorio with an opposite-field single. Venezuela still winning, 2-1. 

Top 5th - Venezuela strike first! Juan David Castillo was hit by a pitch, and scored from first on a double to the right field off the bat of Manuel Lagarde. He advanced to third on a passed ball, and scored the second run of the game on a two-out slow roller to the pitcher. Venezuela leading 2-0.

After three complete innings the game remain scoreless. Both teams have connected three hits in the game. 

Preview - Another full-house is expected at Fernando Ortiz Stadium for tonight's game between Venezuela (0-3) and Mexico (3-0). A win today will put Mexico at the gates of the World Championship Final; while for Venezuela, depending on the results of the other games, this might be a must-win game if they want to play on Sunday for a medal.

Canada vs USA

Canada defeated USA, 10-5, and remain in the race for a spot in Sunday's World Championship Final. The Canadian lineup exploded with five runs in the top of the sixth that proved to be the difference in the game. 

Nicholas Neid pitched 6.2 innings, giving up four hits and five runs against nine strikeouts. Sharl Leclerc replaced Neid and retired the last out with a strikeout. 

With this score, Canada and USA are tied in the standings with a 2-2 record. Both teams need a win tomorrow (along with a combination of other results) to dream with a spot in Sunday's final. 

Bottom 7th - USA score twice on a pair of bases-loaded walks, and then Sharl Leclerc (who came in in relief to retire the last out) struck out Wylie Baumer. Canada win 10-5.

Top 7th - Canada scored one more time on a double from Nolan Bultena to plate Alexander McGillivray. The game is 10-3 for the red and white team.

Top 6th - Canada explode with six runs, including a pair of homers by Joseph Weiler and Riley Good. The red and white squad totalled five hits in the inning. Canada take a 9-3 lead.

Top 5th - Another bases-loaded situation for Canada. With two outs, Sharl Leclerc grounded to shortstop, but a fielding error gives Canada a one-run advantage again. 

Bottom 4th - USA answer back with two runs to tie the game at three. Braden Ducharme hit a double, followed by a hit by pitch to Cody Gibbons. They scored on a grounder to second base and a sacrifice fly. The game is 3-3.

Top 4th - For third consecutive inning Canada loaded the bases, on a bunt-single and a pair of walks. And this time they were able to cash in. With one out on the scoreboard, Gibbons walked Adrian Green to give Canada their first lead in the game. And Alexander McGillivray grounded to second to plate his team's third run. Canada is in front, 3-1.

Bottom 3rd - Now USA missed a good scoring chance. With runners on the corners and one out, Brennan Ducharme grounded into an easy 6-3 double play. The game remains tied.

Top 3rd - Canada lodaed the bases again, but failed to score. A single by Adrian Green and a pair of walks put three runners on with two out, but Daniel Scott grounded to shortstop to end the inning. We're still 1-1.

Top 2nd - An error by the US second baseman Wylie Baumer puts Alexander McGillivray on base, and then Joseph Weiler tripled to center field to tie the game. A walk and a hit by pitch loaded the bases for Canada, with no outs, but the US pitcher Cody Gibbons avoided more damage by forcing two grounders to third base, and striking out Owen Bilinski to end the inning. The game is tied, 1-1.

Bottom 1st - Cody Gibbons sends a line drive off the center field wall to drive in Braden Ducharme. USA strike first, winning 1-0.

Preview - The second Super Round game will be between Canada (1-2) and USA (2-1). The two North American neighbours lost their yesterday's games and need to rebounce to remain in the hunt for a spot in the World Championship Game. 

2023 WBSC U-18 Men's Softball World Cup - Game 34 - CAN vs USA

Australia vs Japan

Kanta Aso pitched a three-hit complete game, while Ruito Ono and Ryuki Tsuda combined for five RBIs from the top two spots in the lineup to lead Japan to a 6-0 win over Australia. Japan improved its record to 3-1 in the Super Round, while Australia dropped to 1-3. 

Bottom 5th - Japan double their lead. Ren Hashimoto tripled off the wall and one pitch later scored walking on a two-run bomb from Ruito Ono. It's the first baseman's first home run of the tournament, and RBIs number five and six. Japan leading 4-0.

Bottom 3rd - Ren Hashimoto drew a leadoff walk and then scored on an error by Australia's second baseman Lachlan Hort. Japan is in front, 2-0.

Bottom 1st - Japan jump ahead with a solo homer off the bat of left fielder Ryuki Tsuda, who rocketed a line drive to right field. He's leading the tournament in runs scored with nine.

Preview - Australia (1-2) win-loss record in the Super Round) and Japan (2-1) will face off in the first Super Round game of the day. This is a rematch of the las two World Championship Finals, with Australia winning in 2018 and Japan in 2020. Both teams opened the Super Round yesterday on a high note as the Aussies pipped Venezuela, and the Japaneses prevailed against Canada. 

2023 WBSC U-18 Men's Softball World Cup - Game 32 - AUS vs JPN

Placement Round

New Zealand vs Czechia

With one day to finish the Placement Round, Czechia secured the overall seventh place in the competition with a 10-4 win agains New Zealand, at Mundialistas Hermosillenses stadium. Andrej Sokol led the Czech offence from the leadoff spot, going 3-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs.

Matej Macas gave up four hits and four runs in four innings, and Matyas Zelinka came in relief with a superb performance of three innings with no hits and runs. Macas got the win, and Zelinka the save.

Czechia swept the Placement Round and finished with a 4-0 record.

Bottom 6th - Adam Bunata hits a double deep to left field to bring in Filip Kucirek. It's Czechia's 10th run of the game. 

Bottom 5th - An Andrej Sokol single drives in Ondrej Zborovsky to extend Czechia's led to 9-4.

Bottom 4th - David Jaluska and David Pokorny add two more for Czechia with a pair of RBI singles. The score is now 8-4.

Third inning - Both teams exchange runs again. New Zealand answered with three runs, including an RBI single from Jayden Potts and a two-run double from Shiloh Rice. Czechia takes one back on a run-producing triple from Jan Pazdera.

Second inning - Both teams score in the inning. New Zealand's Shiloh Rice walked, and then scored on a defensive error by second baseman Ondrej Zobovsky. In the bottom half of the inning, Czechia tied the game again with a David Vicha RBI and then took the lead with four consecutive RBI singles. Czechia leading 5-1 

Singapore vs Argentina

Juan Pablo Godoy hit a grand slam in the first inning and pitched four frames to lead Argentina to a 10-3, five-inning win for the Placement Round. Argentina's record is now 2-1, while Singapore lost their sixth game in the event.

5th inning - Singapore score one in the top half of the inning, but a double from Genaro Correa scores Matias Clara to end the game. Argentina win 10-3.

Bottom 4th - A bases-loaded walk gives Argentina a 9-2 lead.

Bottom 3rd - Argentina take advantage of three walks and a defensive error to score four more. They lead 8-2.

Top 2nd - Zenith Chua hits an RBI single, reduce Singapore's deficit to 4-2.

First inning - Both teams hit a home run in the inning. Ean Eu hit a lead-off home run for Singapore; Juan Pablo Godoy answered with a grand slam. Argentina lead 4-1.

2023 WBSC U-18 Men's Softball World Cup - Game 31 - SGP vs ARG