July 5, 1998
TUCSON, Arizona – Japan used a five-run fifth inning and a complete game from lefthander Soji Tamaka to defeat the USA baseball team, 6-2, in the third game of a five-game series Sunday night at Hi Corbett Field.
The USA (18-8) leads the series 2-1, with Baylor sophomore righthander Jason Jennings (3-0, 0.73 ERA) slated to start Monday night’s seven-inning game vs. Australia before Clemson sophomore righthander Ryan Mottl (1-0, 4.97) will take the mound in the continuation of the Japan series.
Notre Dame sophomore third baseman Brant Ust (Redmond, Wash.) went 0-for-3, with a walk, two strikeouts, five fielding assists and an error.
Texas A&M sophomore lefthander Casey Fossum (2-1) had nine strikeouts over five innings but took the loss, allowing all six runs on eight hits and no walks. Florida State freshman righthander Nick Stocks faced just 13 batters over the final four innings, with five strikeouts and one hit allowed.
The USA jumped out to a 2-1 lead in the fourth inning, behind a booming two-run home run to center field from LSU sophomore catcher Brad Cresse, plating UNLV sophomore rightfielder Ryan Ludwick.
Japan opened the fifth inning with three straight singles, tying the game, before shortstop Hiroshi Matsuse and DH Tomoya Satozaki delivered clutch two-out doubles to push Japan ahead 5-2. Catcher Kosuke Imau capped the big inning with a run-scoring single to center field.
Tamaka struck out 11 USA batters while allowing six hits and four walks.