By TOM ZEBOLD
USF Senior Writer
TAMPA - The USA Softball Women's National Team turned in another strong performance before it plays for what head coach Ken Eriksen calls the "big enchilada."
Team USA wrapped up the first part of its trip to Canada by finishing second in the Canadian Open Championship in Surrey, B.C. The Americans dropped the title game against Japan on Monday night by a 9-6 score after winning its first seven games in the tournament.
Eriksen's squad posted three shutouts and outscored its opponents, 53-30, in the eight games of the tournament that included a 4-3 win over Japan two contests before the title game.
"I thought that we played like a team that hadn't been together for a while, which means good things and things to work on," Eriksen said Tuesday. "It's one of those types of situations that you continue to improve upon. We just have to spend more time together, go over a few things and everybody needs to be comfortable with each other."
Team USA started the summer off by capturing the World Cup of Softball title with a 7-0 record in Oklahoma City less than a month after Eriksen guided USF to the program's first-ever trip to the Women's College World Series.
Team USA now shifts its full attention to the ISF Women's World FP Championship that takes place in Canada from July 13-22. The Americans kick off play in the tournament against Venezuela on July 1. View a full schedule here.
"I'm not so concerned about us dropping last night's game (against Japan)," Eriksen said. "I'd be more concerned today if people were running around and not trying to do anything, but we've got people that want to get out and start working on a day off. That's impressive."