Story Courtesy of Rayburn Hesse
The USA University Team rode the strong arm of Jennie Ritter, clutch hitting, and strong defense for the second straight game to defeat host Chinese Taipei 4-3 in eight innings to win its second gold medal at the 2nd World University Games in Taiwan.
Not only did the team get back-to-back strong efforts in the circle from Ritter, but the USA also won for the second straight time on an RBI single by her Michigan counterpart, Samantha Findlay.
The United States jumped on top in the third, taking a 1-0 lead as Lauren Lappin scored on Lindsay Schutzler’s double.
Chinese Taipei erased the U.S. lead in the top of the fourth, scoring twice on back-to-back singles and an errant throw from right field. Team USA answered back in the fifth as Jackie Rinehart tied the game on an RBI single to center by Schutzler. The U.S. had an opportunity to regain the advantage, but the Red, White and Blue stranded a pair of runners.
The United States had the chance to win in regulation as Lappin, Schutzler and Tina Boutelle all singled to load the bases in the seventh. The bases-loaded advantage died, however, when Lappin was tagged out at home trying to score on Brianne McGowan’s fly ball to right.
After surviving the bases-loaded threat, Chinese Taipei had its opportunity with the sacks full in the eighth. The host team took advantage of two fielder’s choice plays that netted no outs, scoring the international tiebreak runner to take the lead.
Facing survival, the USA, as it did in the seventh, loaded the bases in the bottom half of the extra frame. With Sarah Fekete on second as the international tiebreak runner, Cambria Miranda reached on an error. Christina Clark singled, and Courtney Bures pinch-ran for her. Kristie Fox reached on a fielder’s choice, but Fekete was thrown out at home. Findlay stepped up, however, and delivered the win for the U.S. with a single that scored Miranda and Bures with the winning runs.