Surrey, B.C. –Chinese Taipei broke the USA Softball National Team’s five-game shutout streak at the 14th Annual Canada Cup International Fastpitch Softball Tournament in Surrey, B.C., but the result was still the same, a 10-1 victory. Monica Abbott (Salinas, Calif.) earned her second win of the tournament with Kelly Kretschman (Indian Harbour Beach, Fla.) and Jenny Topping (Whittier, Calif.) both going 2-for-2 with three RBI a piece.
Caitlin Lowe (Tustin, Calif.), who has hit safely in four of her five first at-bats, singled to second to start the productive opening inning. Natasha Watley (Irvine, Calif.) and Jessica Mendoza (Camarillo, Calif.) hit back-to-back singles, with Mendoza’s single scoring Lowe and giving the U.S. the first run of the six-run inning. Kretschman extended the lead to 3-0 as her stand-up double to left center field cleared the bases. Singles by Topping and Lovie Jung (Fountain Valley, Calif. ), and a run-scoring groundout by Jennie Finch (La Mirada, Calif.) plated the remaining three runs.
Abbott made her first start of the tournament and her second appearance in the circle. Abbott hit the lead off batter in the first but responded with three strikeouts to close out the first inning.
After running through the lineup in the first, Watley started off the second inning with a single up the middle. Mendoza then delivered her second extra base hit of the tournament, a triple to left center field that fell just short of going over the wall, to score Watley. A sac fly by Kretschman plated Mendoza and gave the team an 8-0 lead heading into the third.
After throwing two complete innings with six strikeouts, Abbott left the game to Cat Osterman (Houston, Texas). Chinese Taipei broke the USA’s shutout streak as the first batter Osterman faced, Hueng Hui Wen, hit a home run over the left field fence.
The U.S. offense answered with two more runs off three hits in the fourth. Topping gave the team what it needed to end the game in five innings with a two-RBI single that scored Mendoza and Kretschman after they both singled to left and right field, respectively.
Osterman issued two walks in the fifth but left two stranded as she threw three strikeouts to end the game.
The U.S. will play its final pool play game Thursday against the White Rock Renegades at 8:30 p.m. PT. In pool standings, Team USA is currently in first place of the white pool, and with a win tomorrow, would play at 1:00 p.m. PT on Friday to kick off Championship play.