The RP Blu Girls finished their XVII WBSC Women’s Softball World Cup Group C campaign in fourth place after bowing to the host, world No. 8 Italy, 6-5, in the playoff match. The game was suspended mid-game for two hours and 40 minutes due to bad weather conditions at the Campo Comunale da Softball in Castions di Strada on Thursday midnight (Manila time).
Ranked No. 26, the Philippines could not repeat their 6-5 stunner against the Italians less than 24 hours ago that allowed the Nationals to advance to the playoffs.
With Italy ahead 5-3 entering the fourth stanza, the Blu Girls looked primed for a huge blast as Angelu Gabriel singled, followed by a Reyae Villamin double, putting them both in scoring position with no outs.
CJ Roa then stepped to the plate before the game was put into a rain delay that might have cut the momentum for the Philippines.
After almost three hours of suspension, play resumed with Roa being out on a flyball before Cheska Altomonte connected on a double to right-center field, equalizing the match at 5-5.
The answer for the Italians was quick, as in the bottom of the fourth, Alessandra Rotondo doubled before advancing to third base on a sacrifice bunt by Erika Piancastelli.
McKenzie Barbara then brought Rotondo home with a sacrifice fly for the eventual final tally.
The Blu Girls had a big chance to tie the game in the sixth inning as Altomonte and Ellazar reached bases on a couple of hits with just one out. However, MJ Maguad popped out to Italy’s first baseman, Andrea Filler, before tagging Ellazar for the double play.
The Blu Girls scored right in the first frame, thanks to an Alaiza Talisik single that brought Skylynne Ellazar home, making it 1-0.
In the bottom of the second inning, Italy turned the scoreboard to their side as Giulia Koutsoyanopulos hammered a three-run home run to dead center, also pushing Elisa Cecchetti and Fabrizia Marrone across home plate, making it 3-1.
A two-RBI single by Elsie Dela Torre knotted the match at 3-all, but the Italians responded with two runs of their own in the bottom of the third inning, making it 5-3.
Both squads connected well in the match, tallying 10 hits apiece.
Koutsoyanopulos starred for Italy with four RBIs on two hits, while Altomonte led the offensive charge for the Philippines, going 3-for-3 at-bat, including two RBIs.