AGUASCALIENTES, Mexico - The USA Baseball Women's National Team opened up the 2019 COPABE Women's Pan-American Championships in a 15-5 walk-off victory over Venezuela with the help of two home runs on Sunday at Parque Deportivo Ferrocarrilero in Aguascalientes, Mexico.
The U.S. trailed 5-4 when the team pushed 11 runs across in the bottom of the sixth inning to catapult them to a game one win. The final run was scored by Kylee Lahners (Laguna Hills, Calif.) who reached home on a walk-off single by Malaika Underwood (San Diego, Calif).
Five U.S. batters finished the day with multi-hit performances, including Alex Hugo (Olathe, Kan.), Lahners, Jade Gortarez (Riverside, Calif.), Underwood and Kelsie Whitmore (Temecula, Calif.).
Megan Baltzell (Stafford, Va.) and Hugo sent Team USA's first two home runs of the tournament over the right field and left field walls, respectively. Baltzell's blast put the U.S. on the board in the second inning and Hugo's homer was a two-run shot that gave the team its first lead of the game.
Marti Semetelli (West Newton, Mass.) started on the bump for the red, white, and blue, allowing five runs on eight hits while striking out one batter. Jamie Mackay (Newport Beach, Calif) came in as relief and notched the win, giving up just one hit and no runs in her one inning of action. Angelina Jedemeza suffered the loss for Venezuela.
• Venezuela took an early lead in the top of the first inning, scoring two runs on three hits.
• Baltzell sent Team USA's first home run over the right field wall to cut the deficit in half 2-1 in the second inning.
• Venezuela put up one more run in the top of the third, extending its lead to 3-1.
• Underwood led off the bottom of the fourth with a single to right field and reached third base on a double steal before scoring on a Whitmore singled through the right side making the score 3-2.
• Venezuela continued to score against the U.S. pitching staff, taking a 5-2 lead in the top of the fifth.
• Hugo and Lahners led of the bottom of the fifth with a walk and a double, respectively, and scored on a Gortarez single, putting the game at 5-4.
• Anna Kimbrell (Fort Mill, S.C.) hit a lead-off single to left in the bottom of the sixth and Hugo followed with a two-run shot over the left field wall to give Team USA its first lead of the game, 6-5.
• Lahners reached on a hit-by-pitch, Gortarez followed with a double to left field, and Underwood was walked to load the bases for Baltzell. Lahners scored when Venezuela chose to intentionally walk Baltzell, giving the U.S. a 7-5 lead in the bottom of the sixth.
• Whitmore stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and sent Gortarez home with a single to center field for an 8-5 in the bottom of the sixth.
• Kimbrell was walked with the bases loaded, allowing Underwood to cross the plate and give Team USA a 9-5 lead in the bottom of the sixth, and Lansdell also picked up an RBI-walk to score Baltzell, extending the U.S. lead to 10-5.
• Hugo collected her third hit of the game with a single up the middle that moved Kimbrell and Whitmore across the plate, putting Team USA up 12-5 in the bottom of the sixth.
• Lahners doubled to left center field in her second at-bat of the sixth inning, scoring Hugo and Lansdell to make it a 14-5 ball-game.
• Underwood ended the game with a walk-off single to right field that scored Lahners and gave Team USA a 15-5 run-rule victory in the sixth inning.
• Five U.S. batters finished the day with multi-hit performances, including Alex Hugo (3-for-4), Kylee Lahners (2-for-3), Jade Gortarez (2-for-4), Malaika Underwood (2-for-4) and Kelsie Whitmore (2-for-4).
• Jamie Mackay collected the win for the U.S., scattering one hit in her one inning of relief.
• Megan Baltzell and Alex Hugo each hit home runs on the contest. Baltzell's solo shot gave Team USA its first run of the game and Hugo's two-run blast gave the team its first lead at 6-5.
• Alex Hugo led the red, white, and blue offensively in game one, hitting .750 (3-for-4) with a single, a double, a home run and four RBIs in the contest.
• The USA Baseball Women's National Team will continues action at the 2019 COPABE Women's Pan-American Championships on Monday, August 19 against the Dominican Republic immediately following the completion of the opening ceremony at the Parque Deportivo Ferrocarrilero in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Stay tuned to social media for an updated start time.
• Stay tuned to @USABaseballWNT on Twitter and visit USABaseball.com for the most up-to-date news about the 2019 USA Baseball Women's National Team.