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World Cup of Softball: Jessica Moore helps U.S. to second straight shutout

Team USA will face Japan on Saturday night.
By Rhiannon Walker, Staff Writer, Published: July 12, 2013

But for all the media attention and discussion about how the team would make it through the tournament without one of the best players in the game, Team USA is 2-0 in the World Cup and about to play what could be its biggest contest of the weekend.

Eriksen said neither he nor the team has focused on the hype. They can only focus on things in the present, and presently they have a game against Japan on Saturday.

“If you think about it, you guys are making a little bit of a mountain out of a mole hill with that,” Eriksen said. “I think it's time to move on. The young lady's made a great decision in life; she's a phenomenal person, I love her to death. And so we're Team USA right now, and that's what we're going to go to bat with tomorrow against Japan.”

Lauren Gibson got the scoring started for the Americans with a two-run single in the bottom of the third inning against Australia, plating Michelle Moultrie and Kourtney Salvarola.

With two outs in the third, Valerie Arioto delivered an RBI single to pad the American's lead. Nicole Hudson then drove in Arioto with a single.

“The energy just keeps rolling,” Arioto said. “So hopefully it goes on tomorrow, and I think that was the biggest thing for us, especially being a young and new team is that energy, you know that connection that we have together. I think we've accomplished that so far.”

The United States will face Japan at 8 p.m. Saturday. The last time the teams faced off, they played a 10-inning thriller in the 2012 International Softball Federation Women's World Championship, which Japan won 2-1.