U.S. clinches top seed in Group B
CARACAS, Venezuela -- The United States defeated the Dominican Republic 10-1 on Monday to improve its record to 6-0 in group play at the world softball championships.
Jennie Finch was the winning pitcher for the defending champions, who will face the Czech Republic on Tuesday in its final group match.
The victory ensured the U.S. will be the top seed in Group B when the quarterfinals open. The other top three teams in the group are: Venezuela (5-1), China (4-2) and Australia (4-2). The quarterfinals are Wednesday, followed by the semifinals on Thursday and the final Friday.
The U.S. scored four runs in each of the first two innings. Alissa Haber was 2 for 3 and is hitting a team-high .786 with 13 RBIs and nine runs scored.
Finch picked up her second victory in the tournament. She struck out four of the first six batters and allowed only one runner to reach base in the first three innings.
Olympic champion Japan also improved to 6-0, defeating Britain 7-0. Japan will be the top seed in Group A. The other top three teams in the group are: Canada (5-1), Taiwan (4-2) and Netherlands (4-2).
Japan closes group play on Tuesday against South Africa.
In other results Monday: Cuba 5, Argentina 0; Australia 10, New Zealand 0; Taiwan 6, Netherlands 3; Canada 12, South Africa 0; China 8, Czech Republic 1; Venezuela 10, Botswana 0.
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press
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