We couldn't beat Japan the first time around. Valerie Arioto got payback at the diamond.
Arioto walked in the first run of the game with the bases loaded to give USA a 1-0 lead over Japan, then added another two-out RBI (her tenth of the tournament!) to give them a 4-1 lead. The Bears would hold on and win 6-4 to capture another world title. GO BEARS!
After the jump, Valerie's other highlights from this Cup! (HT to LEastCoastBears for looking out for her accolades!)
Here's what Valerie did before today's game:
Valerie Arioto fueled a three-run sixth as the 2011 USA Softball Women’s National Team rallied to defeat Australia 5-2 Friday evening at the World Cup of Softball VI in Oklahoma City. The Americans led 2-0 through the fourth but the Aussies fought back, scoring single runs in the fifth and sixth innings to tie the game.
Stacy May-Johnson (Reno, Nev.) reached on an error and Brittany Schutte (Fountain Valley, Calif.) was intentionally walked with two outs as Arioto (Pleasanton, Calif.) came to the plate in the bottom of the sixth. Arioto then delivered her first hit of the night at a most critical time, a bases clearing triple to right to put Team USA back on top. She then scored on a single to left by Taylor Hoagland (Flower Mound, Texas) to push the score to the eventual final margin.
Valerie Arioto doubled in the tiebreaking run and followed it with a grand slam to power the United States to an 8-4 victory against rival Japan on Saturday night at the World Cup of Softball.
She smashed a ground rule double to left field to give the U.S. a 3-2 lead in the fifth, then broke it open the next inning with a drive that didn't need a bounce to clear the left-field fence.
May-Johnson’s blow gave Team USA an 8-0 lead. Her blast was followed by solo homers by University of California first baseman Valerie Arioto and University of Florida catcher Brittany Schutte that ended the game on the 10-run rule after four innings. (2-3, 2 runs scored, 1 RBI)