FROM USA BASEBALL
(CARY, N.C.) – Michael Choice (UT Arlington) went 2-4 with three RBI and Team USA completed a sweep of Team Canada with a 9-3 win, Monday, at newly dedicated Coleman Field at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, N.C.
Blake Forsythe (Tennessee) scored the first run of the game for the USA Baseball National Team (Collegiate) when the first baseman misplayed a routine throw from third on a bunt from Kolten Wong (Hawaii). The U.S. scored one more run in the inning for a 2-0 lead on an RBI fielder’s choice from Bryce Brentz (Middle Tennessee State) as Wong outran the throw from second base to home plate.
Wong singled to centerfield to score Christian Colon (Cal State Fullerton) from second and Michael Choice hit a double to a diving centerfielder to score Wong for another two runs in the third inning as Team USA went up 4-0.
Team Canada cut its deficit in half in the top of the fourth inning when Kellin Deglan lifted a strike from starter Asher Wojciechowski (The Citadel) over the right field fence. The two-run home run that just cleared the 330 foot fence was the first home run hit by Team Canada in the series.
Rick Hague (Rice) hit an RBI single up the middle in the bottom of the fourth inning and Michael Choice (UT Arlington) and Bryce Brentz each hit RBI singles in the fifth inning to extend the Team USA lead on Team Canada starter Steve McKinnon, 8-2.
Brentz (Middle Tennessee State) came on in relief of starter Wojciechowski after he reached his predetermined pitch count. Brentz forced four consecutive outs on just 12 pitches, striking out the side in the seventh. Wojciechowski finished five and two-thirds innings with two runs on three hits and struck out eight batters.
Team Canada tallied another run in the eighth inning on Brentz when Adam Nelubowich, a 14th round selection by the Seattle Mariners, placed a double in the right-center gap to score Brandon Dailey. A second run nearly scored on the play but a perfectly executed cut off throw from centerfielder Choice to Hague at second, allowed Hague to throw out the runner at home plate.
Team USA scored its last run in the bottom of the sixth inning on a sacrifice fly by Wong for the final score of 9-3.
Wojciechowski (1-0) got the win in his five and two-thirds inning of work for the U.S. and Steve McKinnon (0-1) was tagged with the loss. Brentz added two and a third innings of relief and Matt Newman (Arizona State) closed out the game with two strikeouts.
Other than Choice, Hague was the only other Team USA hitter with multiple hits on the day; he went 2-5 with an RBI.
USA Baseball and the Town of Cary officially dedicated the main stadium field of the USA Baseball National Training Complex as Coleman Field before the game, in honor of former Cary Town Council Member Bill Coleman. Coleman is an ex-college baseball player and a significant factor in the relocation of USA Baseball from Tucson, Ariz. to its current home in Cary.
Team USA will play again Wednesday, July 1, at Fieldcrest Cannon Stadium in Kannapolis, N.C. when it kicks off its four-game friendship series with Guatemala. First pitch, Wednesday, is slated for 7:05 PM. The U.S. will have an off day on Tuesday.
- Attendance for Friday’s game was counted at 2,245.
- With the win, the USA Baseball National Team (Collegiate) has won 29 consecutive games dating back to last summer.