WESTMINSTER, Colo. – Regrouping from an earlier loss, Team USA U-16 rebounded strong with a 13-0 victory over Greece in its second game of pool play at the Triple Crown International Challenge.
The message from the coaching staff was to play loose and free as the girls are all learning to play with each other. Against Greece, Team USA got that message.
“I think we were just making the situation much bigger than it was,” Team USA’s Anabela Abduallah said of the team’s early struggles in the first game. “Once we just relaxed and remembered to do what we know how to do, we’ve been playing all our lives, we put it all together.”
Team USA scored two runs in the top of the first inning and immediately shut down Team Greece to a one-two-three inning. In the top of the second inning, Team USA’s offensive fire power was on full display. Anabela Abdullah launched a monster two-run home run to deep left field, and then Emery Glaser added to it with a three-run shot to left field to make it 7-0.
“Really we just have to get backspin on the ball like coach tells us,” Abdullah said. “We just have to wait because we were all early on it. The ball will go because we are in Colorado.”
Team USA’s power hitting continued in the top of the third inning as Brantlee Wortham hit a grand slam to extend the lead to 12-0, before Abdullah once again hit it over the fence in the top of the fourth inning. Team USA will take on Team Philippines tomorrow in the final game of pool play before bracket play commences.
“So far it’s been really fun,” Abdullah said. “I’m just out here making friends and having a blast. We aren’t thinking about how we do, we are just going out there having a blast and doing the thing that we love.”