FUKUSHIMA, Japan – World-ranked No. 1 Team USA came up short in game two of the Japan All-Star Series, falling 6-1 to No. 2 Japan to even the series 1-1 for tomorrow’s finale contest. Over 4,000 fans filled the seats at today’s game, which was held at Azuma Stadium – host of the Tokyo 2020 Softball Olympic Games.
The U.S. offense struggled to come alive in today’s matchup with a combined five hits on the day, four of which came off the bats of Hannah Gammill (2) and Erin Coffel (2) in addition to a solo hit from Jada Cody. Alana Vawter got the start in the circle for the Eagles – the first of her Team USA career – tossing 4.2 innings before handing things over to Ruby Meylan in the top of the fifth. Together, the two totaled five strikeouts while keeping the Japan offense off the board for a combined 4 innings.
Taking an early lead in the top of the first, Team Japan held on to a 1-0 lead until the bottom of the third when the U.S. evened the score thanks to a leadoff double from Gammill paired with an RBI single from Coffel. The Japan offense quickly broke the tie in the top of the fourth, stringing together a pair of base hits and a fielders choice to pull ahead, 3-1. After a quiet inning from the U.S. offense, Team Japan tacked on three more in the top of the fifth to extend its lead, 6-1. Despite putting runners on in the final three innings, the Eagles were unable to muster any runs – falling 6-1 to Team Japan.
The U.S. and Japan will conclude the three-game series tomorrow, August 7, in a 7 p.m. JT (5 a.m. CT) winner-take-all finale at Yokohama Stadium as the record sits at 1-1 through two games. Once again returning to the venue of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic softball gold medal game, Yokohama Stadium also played host to last year’s Japan All-Star Series finale where over 13,000 fans were in attendance.
Due to live streaming restrictions in Japan, USA Softball is unable to provide streaming of this event. To follow along via live stats, please follow the 2023 U.S. Women’s National Team on GameChanger.