The U.S. Olympic softball team struggled to put runs on the board in Tuesday’s gold medal game against Japan, but it took away runs in style.
Left fielder Janie Reed made a spectacular home run robbery against Japan’s Fujita Yamato to close out the top of the seventh inning. The leaping grab kept the Team USA deficit at 2-0 heading into the final frame.
The game was filled with web gems, including Kelsey Stewart’s heads-up play to get a runner out at second on a bunt attempt in the third inning.
Offense was ultimately the downfall for Team USA. Though the team went a perfect 5-0 in pool play, the bats never put up more than two runs in a single game. In two cases, the team didn’t get it’s offense going until the final at-bat of the game, needing to win walk-off fashion.
Reed did her part at the plate to start the game with a one-out triple in the first, but she was tagged out at home in the ensuing at-bat after trying to score on a dropped third strike.
The team got three runners in scoring position throughout the contest but could not get anyone across the plate. Japan’s Yukiko Ueno and Miu Goto combined to allow just three hits to Team USA while picking up six strikeouts.
This is the second straight Olympic appearance where Japan has gotten the better of an undefeated Team USA in the gold medal game.
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