World Cup of Softball: U.S. team clinches spot in championship game
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Arioto hit her second home run in the sixth inning of Team USA's first game of its Saturday doubleheader to secure a 2-1 victory against the Netherlands. The Dutch were unbeaten in the tournament before facing the U.S.
She ended Saturday a combined 3-for-6 at the plate with two home runs and five RBIs.
“She's in the zone right now, and everything's looking pretty big so let's keep going in that direction,” Eriksen said.
Even when she didn't hit the ball out of the yard, Arioto made contact. She has struck out only once in the Americans' last three games.
Arioto attributes her batting in the tournament to having patience at the plate.
“I'm looking for a certain pitch, and I've gotten it so far,” Arioto said.
OU's Keilani Ricketts, who earned her first start and win in the World Cup, believes Arioto has done a good job of identifying pitches to hit all weekend.
“Valerie is definitely seeing the ball,” Ricketts said. “If I was the other pitcher, I wouldn't want to be throwing to her.”
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