USA Softball Holds Off Japan 1-0 At U.S. Cup

June 22, 2001

Honolulu, Hawaii - In their first re-match since the 2000 Olympic gold medalgame, the United States defeated Japan 1-0 at the 2001 U.S. Cup Thursdaynight at the University of Hawaii's Wahine Softball Stadium.

U.S. pitcher Catherine Osterman (Houston, TX), who pitched a complete gamewith 13 strikeouts, got all the offensive support she would need when AmandaFreed (Cypress, CA) singled home Jessica Mendoza (Camarillo, CA) in thebottom of the first inning.

Osterman, just 18-years old, is the third youngest pitcher to start for USASoftball in an international game. The other pitchers were 1996 OlympianMichele Granger and two-time Olympian Christa Williams.

With two outs, Mendoza hit a double to right field and, following ahit-by-pitch at-bat for Stacey Nuveman (La Verne, CA), slid across home withthe only run of the game after Freed singled sharply back up the middle.Freed had two hits in the game for Team USA.

Osterman worked out of her first frame jitters - she walked the game'slead-off batter and endured a fielding error by the defense - to put up someglistening numbers. Along with her baker's dozen strikeouts, which includedsetting down the side in the second, she allowed just three hits and issuedone walk.

'I started off a little shaky tonight but settled down after the firstcouple of batters,' Osterman said. 'We tried to keep the ball low and getgroundouts from their hitters and it seemed to work really well.'

Osterman's counterpart, Japan's Yuko Taka, also allowed just three hits anddidn't surrender a walk, but her team couldn't find a timely bit of hitting.Emi Nato had two of Japan's hits, with Satoko Mabuchi recording the other.

USA Softball continues competition at the U.S. Cup with a game against Chinaat 11 p.m. (EST) Friday. Japan and Australia will open the second day'sactivities with a game at 9 p.m.

courtesy of USA Softball

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