Americans Shut Out Japanese 7-0 for 7th Straight World Title


CARACAS  Mother Nature tried to pull a fast one last night in Venezuela at the ISF World Championship, pushing the long-awaited title matchup between the US and Japan back almost three hours—but the US made up for lost time by overwhelming the Japanese 7-0 in a game shortened to five innings by the mercy rule.

Despite the absence of superstar Olympic pitcher Yukiko Ueno, the Japanese were in high spirits going into the game. Except for a single loss to the Americans the night before, they were undefeated in the tournament—including a convincing 12-3 victory over Team Canada in the bronze medal game.

Cat Osterman started in the circle for the Red, White & Blue for the second straight time—a clear indication head coach Jay Miller considers her the top pitcher on the US squad ahead of Jennie Finch, Monica Abbott and Eileen Canney.

The game remained scoreless until the fourth inning when Team USA unleashed its offensive muscle: Alissa Haber, Jennie Finch and Lauren Lappin drove in four runs between them, and Lauren Lappin scored on a passed ball.

Andrea Duran’s two-run homer in the fifth sealed the deal at 7-0.

After the game Osterman wrapped her shoulders in the American flag, clearly relishing the victory in light of her heartbreaking loss to the Japanese in the 2008 Olympic gold medal game.

It was the seventh consecutive World Championship title for the Americans. Team USA went undefeated at the ISF Women's World Championship, outscoring opponents 88-6.

Japan’s silver medal was its seventh medal at the Worlds. Canada’s bronze medal was only its second World medal, the first being a silver medal in 1978 when it lost to the US in the championship game 4-0. Read more.