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USA Baseball Downs Korea 8-3, Falls to Nicaragua

July 13, 1999

The USA baseball team closed out its five-game series with Nicaragua by posting their fourth win of the series, 8-3 in Ogden, Utah on July 9. Team USA then dropped the first game of a three-game series versus Nicaragua’s Pan Am team, 6-0 in Boise, Idaho on July 10.

Notre Dame’s junior-to-be righthander Aaron Heilman (Logansport, Ind.) pitched two and one-third shutout innings versus Nicaragua. Heilman continues to be one of the top pitchers on the USA staff, leading the team in appearances (eight, with two starts), while ranking second in ERA (1.62), innings pitched (16.2) and strikeouts (19). He has allowed just five walks, 12 hits and a .197 opponent batting average, with a 1-1 record and two saves.

Team USA is next scheduled to face Nicaragua on Tuesday night in Portland, Ore., before closing the series in Spokane, Wash. The team then will return to its headquarters in Tucson, Ariz., for a four-team tournament that will feature the USA Pan Am Games team, plus the national teams from Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic.

USA 8, KOREA 3 (July 9)
California third baseman Xavier Nady led the USA heavy hitters with a single, double and three RBI while Miami (Fla.) rightfielder Manny Crespo doubled twice, as the USA won for the fourth time in five games versus Korea, at Lindquist Field in Ogden, Utah … Team USA scored 46 runs in the series, with their only loss coming 13-11 … Stetson lefthander Len Dinardo made his first start of the summer after six relief appearances … Dinardo issued single runs in the first, third and fourth innings but was in command throughout his seven-inning stint, with six strikeouts and three walks. … Arizona righthander Ben Diggins closed out the final two innings … the USA broke a 1-1 tie with a four-run second inning, sparked by Crespo’s leadoff double and a single to center by Wichita State second baseman Koyie Hill … North Carolina centerfielder Tyrell Godwin then legged out a bunt to the third-base side and San Francisco first baseman Tagg Bozied followed with a bases-loaded fielder’s choice to plate a run … Nady capped the inning with a two-run double to right field … the USA added three unearned runs in the inning, thanks to a throwing error by Korea second baseman M.C. Shin … Arizona shortstop Keoni DeRenne’s double drove in the first of three USA runs in the fourth inning.

NICARAGUA 6, USA 0 (July 10)
A veteran Nicaragua National Team-which includes seven players 30 years of age or older-and unfamiliar wooden bats proved to be too much of a challenge for Team USA at Boise’s Memorial Stadium … despite a strong performance by UCLA righthander Jon Brandt (5.2 IP, 8 H, 3 R/2 ER, 2 BB, 4 Ks), the USA (8-9) failed to push across any runs S Nicaragua-which will compete in the upcoming Pan Am Games-36-year-old lefthander Asdrudes Flores checked Team USA on three hits over 5.2 innings S reliever Diego Sandino then hit Bozied with a pitch to load the bases but Nady flied out to right S Team USA also left runners on first and third base in the eighth S Heilman relieved Brandt with 2.1 shutout innings (3 H, 1 BB, 3 Ks) S Team USA has played two games this season with wooden bats, scoring just two runs in 19 innings S the USA fell behind in the third when Bozied appeared to lose Brandt’s pickoff throw in the setting sun, allowing a run to score from third … Nicaragua added two runs in the sixth and three more in the ninth versus Houston’s Kyle Crowell.