Team USA decaffeinates Colombia with 10-run first

August 22, 2007

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  • BARQUISIMETO, Venezuela – The Youth National Team exploded for 10 runs in the bottom of the first and received a combined one-hitter from Jacob Tillotson (Lake City, Fla.) and Nolan Fontana (Winter Garden, Fla.) to rout Colombia, 15-0, in five innings on Wednesday afternoon at Daniel Canonico Stadium.

    Tillotson held Colombia to one hit in four innings with four strikeouts and Fontana struck out the side in the fifth for Team USA.

    Shortstop Nick Franklin (Longwood, Fla.) laced a first-pitch double over the centerfielder’s head to start the bottom of the first. Second baseman Justin Charles (Galt, Calif.) followed with a single to right to move Franklin to third. Franklin would then score on a wild pitch and Charles moved to second. Charles would then advance to third and later score on two wild pitches to give Team USA a 2-0 lead. First baseman Colton Cain (Waxahachie, Texas) then drew a walk and third baseman Richie Shaffer (Charlotte, N.C.) was hit by a pitch. After a pitching change, Cain and Shaffer would both move up a base on a wild pitch. Leftfielder Zach Vincej (Saugus, Calif.) followed with a walk to load the bases and centerfielder Andrew Aplin (Suisun, Calif.) drew a walk to score Cain. Catcher Nate Gonzalez (Clermont, Fla.) followed with an RBI-single to center, driving in Shaffer. After the second pitching change of the inning, Tillotson was hit by a pitch that allowed Vincej to cross the plate. Franklin then laced a two-run single to right to score Aplin and Gonzalez and move Tillotson to third. Charles then lifted a sacrifice fly to right to drive in Tillotson. After rightfielder Randal Grichuk (Rosenberg, Texas) was hit by a pitch, Cain doubled high off the left field wall, driving in Franklin and Grichuk to cap the inning.

    Team USA was very patient at the plate in the first inning, drawing three walks and taking what the Colombian pitchers gave them. USA saw 45 pitches in the inning, along with three hit by pitches and three wild pitches. The team scored 10 runs on five hits and scored twice on wild pitches.

    Team USA has now outscored its opponents, 22-1, in the first inning of the four games.

    Colombia would load the bases in the top of the second but Tillotson got third baseman Albert Paternina to strike out swinging to end the inning.

    Franklin would lead off the bottom of the third with a high-hop single over the first baseman’s head and when Alberto Vega misplayed the ball in right, Franklin advanced all the way to third. Charles then lifted a sacrifice fly to center to score Franklin, giving Team USA an 11-0 lead.

    Team USA added three runs in the bottom of the fourth to extend their lead to 14-0. After leftfielder Matt Davidson (Yucaipa, Calif.) was hit by a pitch to start the frame, Vincej singled through the left side, advancing Davidson to third. Rightfielder Robert Refsnyder (Laguna Hills, Calif.) then drew a walk to load the bases. Davidson would then score and Vincej would move to third when Gonzalez grounded into a 6-4-3 double play. Fontana then came on to pinch hit and sent a fly ball to right but Vega dropped the ball at the warning track, allowing Vincej to score and Fontana to reach third. Luke Bailey (La Grange, Ga.) capped the inning with a pinch-hit RBI-single to left to plate Fontana.

    Grichuk lined a leadoff double into the gap in left center to start the bottom of the fifth before advancing to third on a wild pitch. First baseman Austin Maddox (Jacksonville, Fla.) then reached on a popup single to right that the infield lost in the air. Davidson followed with an RBI-single to left to score Grichuk and end the game at 15-0.

    Franklin led Team USA at the plate, going 3-for-3 with a double, a pair of RBI and three runs scored. Cain went 1-for-2 with a two-run double and a run scored, Charles was 1-for-2 with two RBI and a run scored and Grichuk finished 1-for-2 with a double and two runs scored. Aplin went 1-for-1 with a double, an RBI and a run scored, Gonzalez was 1-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored and Vincej finished 1-for-2 with two runs scored. Davidson went 1-for-1 with an RBI-single and a run scored, Bailey was 1-for-1 with an RBI-single and Maddox finished 1-for-1. Tillotson finished with an RBI and a run scored, while Shaffer and Fontana both scored a run in the win.

    Team USA will take on Cuba tomorrow night at 7 p.m. The winner of that game will advance to Saturday’s gold medal game, which will most likely be played against Venezuela.