Even though pitcher Sara Nevins graduated from USF over a year ago, she and coach Ken Eriksen showed they can still win together when Team USA defeated Japan 6-1 in the World Cup of Softball X Championship in Irvine, California on Sunday.
Team USA won six of seven games en route to the championship, with its lone loss a 4-1 defeat to Canada on Friday.
Outside of that loss, Team USA outscored the competition 45-3.
In the championship game Sunday, the team got out to an early 3-0 lead in the first inning that it would never relinquish.
“We always talk about winning the first inning defensively and offensively to get us off to a good start,” Eriksen said in a release from USA Softball.
Pitcher Jessica Moore ensured the team’s lead would hold up as she held Japan to three hits and one run over 4 1/3 innings.
Nevins threw the final 2 2/3 innings, allowing one walk and no hits to earn the save.
The championship was Eriksen’s fourth in five years as coach of Team USA.
Team USA will be in search of another tournament victory when it plays in the Pan American Games in Toronto from July 15-26.
Two Bulls named to watch lists
Following a record-breaking season, AAC Freshman of the Year Marlon Mack has been nominated to the watch list for the Maxwell Award, the award given to the best college football player.
Mack is one of five AAC players to make the 80-player list due to his 1,041 rushing yards and nine touchdowns.
Joining Mack on a watch list is senior tight end Sean Price.
Price has been named to the watch list for the John Mackey Award, which is given to the best tight end in college football.
Price has produced similar numbers in each of his first three seasons with USF, catching somewhere between 15 and 20 passes for around 200 yards.
But now that Price is a senior and former tight end Mike McFarland is no longer around to take away receptions, Price could be in for his best season yet as a Bull.
Williams steps up play
After being held to no points in her first game with Team USA in the World University Games in Gwanju, South Korea, Courtney Williams found her shooting stroke over the past two games.
She scored 18 points on 8-of-17 shooting and grabbed eight rebounds in Team USA’s 90-75 victory over China on Monday.
Williams again helped Team USA to another win when she scored eight points in the first quarter against the Czech Republic.
The rest of the team responded to Williams’ early spark, leading them to a 92-54 win Tuesday.
With Team USA (3-0) making it through group play unscathed, it will now advance to the medal round quarterfinals.
The quarterfinals will kick off for Team USA today when it plays Hungary (2-1) at 7:30 EDT.
The game will be broadcast on ESPNU.