Australia have qualified for the playoff rounds at the Junior Women’s Softball World Championship — but now the hard work starts all over again.
The Junior Spirit will play China in Clearwater, Florida, tomorrow morning Australian time, and need to win to keep their championship chances alive.
Head Coach Kerrie Porter says her players are excited about the challenge that lies ahead of them.
“Junior Spirit have done everything asked of them so far in the tournament and are looking forward to the challenges of the playoffs,” Porter said after today’s final group game against Israel.
Australia and China both finished second in their respective groups, the Junior Spirit compiling a 5-1 win-loss record and China finishing at 3-2.
The Junior Spirit played their final group game today, easily beating Israel. China lost to Canada but still had enough wins on the board to finish ahead of Mexico in their group.
The top two teams from each group will battle it out for medals. The other six in contention are USA, Chinese Taipei, Japan, the Czech Republic, Puerto Rico and Canada.
Game Six: Australia 20, Israel 0
The numbers tell the story of the Junior Spirit’s emphatic victory over Israel in the final round of pool games.
Every Australian batter had at least one hit and one RBI as the Junior Spirit combined for 21 hits, including three triples and three doubles.
The scored an extraordinary14 runs in the first inning, then three in the second and three in the third to end the game after three innings.
Leading the offensive charge were Tamieka Whitefield, Brianna Trim, Shannon Keevers and Tia Waters, who each had three hits.
Rhiannon Kemp, Natasha Holt, Maddison Smith and Sara Riou each had two hits as the Junior Spirit kept the runs flowing.
Pitcher Georgia Hood, making her first appearance at the World Championship, totally dominated, allowing just two baserunners while striking out seven.