The U.S. Softball Women’s National Team lost 5-4 against Japan in the gold medal final at the 2017 Japan Cup in Takasaki City, Japan on Sunday.
The first inning had fans from both teams battling out the cheers. Team USA got an early 1-0 edge when Kelsey Stewart scurried around the base paths to score. In the sixth inning, the U.S. extended the lead to 4-1.
— USA Softball (@USASoftball) August 27, 2017
Japan came up for their final at-bat after the U.S. retired without adding anything to their lead. After the fourth pitching change for Team USA, Kelly Barnhill took the mound to closeout the win. Barnhill had a good record this season with 63 strikeouts under her belt. However, a sacrifice fly helped Japan come from behind and win in walk-off fashion.
Team USA finished with a .366 batting average while outscoring opponents 193-49 in the tournament. The Japan Cup was the final tournament of the 2017 season for the Women’s National Team. Prior to the Japan Cup, Team USA claimed gold at the Pan American Championship.
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Team USA will return to play in the tournament next summer.