Japan's Saki Yamazaki hits an inside-the-park home run in the third inning during a women's world softball championship game against Canada, in Chiba, near Tokyo Sunday, Aug. 12, 2018. (Kyodo News via AP)

US qualifies for Olympics with Japan win at softball worlds

August 12, 2018 - 5:02 am

MAKUHARI, Japan (AP) — The United States has qualified for the softball tournament at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics after Japan beat Canada 3-0 at the women's world softball championship on Sunday.

By losing to Japan, Canada finishes third in the tournament that doubles as a qualifier for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Japan plays the U.S. later Sunday in the championship game.

The winner of the tournament will be awarded an Olympic spot. If Japan wins, the second-place finisher will get the Olympic spot because Japan has an automatic berth as host.

Softball and baseball were dropped from the Olympic program after the 2008 Beijing Games but have been restored for 2020.

Yukiko Ueno picked up the win without allowing Canada a real chance to score, striking out seven while giving up four hits and no walks over the distance.

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