Ruggiano's HRs lead U.S. past Taiwan at world cup
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Justin Ruggiano hit a tie-breaking, three-run homer in the seventh inning and added a solo home run in the ninth to lead the United States to a 10- 7 win over Taiwan on Wednesday and the top seed in the World Cup quarterfinals.
The U.S. team finished 6-1 in group play, and takes on South Korea on Friday in an opening quarterfinal game.
Ruggiano finished with three hits, five RBIs, two runs scored and a walk, while Evan Longoria was 3-for-5 with a home run.
Taiwan scored a run in the ninth inning and had the bases loaded before U.S. manager Davey Johnson brought on reliever Chris Booker to record the final two outs. Starter Josh Outman went the first five innings and allowed two earned runs on three hits with eight strikeouts.
Also Wednesday, the Netherlands surprised Cuba 2-1 -- the Cubans first loss in the World Cup since 2001 -- and advanced to the quarterfinals.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press