Yesterday, when the USA Women’s National Team lost to Canada 3-2 in the first semi-final game, it was a set-back, but not fatal as the U.S. still had a solid pathway to win the Pan American Games.
Everything that needed to happen did, but it wasn’t easy as USA had to beat Puerto Rico earlier in the day 3-1 and in the Gold Medal game was able to pull out a 3-1 win over Canada by scoring the two decisive runs in the bottom of the 6th inning.
And when the championship is on the line, who do you go to? The top player in the world, Monica Abbott, who went the distance for the U.S., scattering four hits while striking out 10.
Team USA got the first run on the board when Michelle Moultrie homered with two outs in the bottom of the 2nd inning, but Canada answered with its own solo homer as Holly Speers tied it in the top of the 4th inning.
The scored remained 1-1 until the 6th when Valerie Arioto and Delaney Spaulding singled with no outs. Kirsti Merritt ran for Arioto and scored the first run of the inning on a Moultrie single to right field. After a two-out single by Kelsey Stewart, Spaulding came home to score from third on an error by Speers at first base.
Canada didn’t go down without a fight, though, in the 7th inning as Jenn Salling singled to start off the inning and Larissa Franking put her in scoring position with a two out single. However, Abbot ended the game by striking out Janet Leung to give Team USA the Pan American Games title.
Sara Groenewegen started and pitched three innings giving up the one home run to Moltrie. Jenna Caira pitched two scoreless innings and was succeeded by Danielle Lawrie who gave up the two late runs and took the loss.
Moultrie was the offensive standout, going 2-for-3 with two RBIs and a run scored.
It was the Americans ninth Gold Medal at the Pan American Games.
We'll have more on the big win for the USA soon...