Canada Cup - Day 6
Friday, July 10, 2009
(Surrey, BC) The Canadian Senior Womens National Softball Team put an amazing effort in their final round-robin game against the United States by taking a 2-0 lead, but a costly error in the bottom of the fourth inning led to three runs as the United States improved to 8-0 at the Canada Cup. Canada outhit the Americans, and the pitching trio of newcomers Kylie Hovinga (La Vista, Nebraska), Leah McIntosh (Whitby, ON) and Jenna Caira (Toronto, ON) held the opposition off balance for most of the night, but it was not enough to knock off the powerful United States.
Canada once again jumped to an early lead, scoring a run in the top of the first inning. Melanie Matthews (Surrey, BC) led off with a single, followed by a hit-by-pitch to second batter Megan Timpf (Port Dover, ON). After a groundout moved the runners to second and third, Jennifer Yee (North Delta, BC) was intentionally walked, loading the bases for Kaleigh Rafter (Guelph, ON), who delivered an RBI single.
Canada added another run in the top of the fourth, when Kelsey Haberl (Burnaby, BC) and Caitlin Lever (Buffalo, New York) hit back-to-back singles with two outs, which led to Haberl scoring on a fielding error by the Americans, giving Canada a 2-0 lead. However, the United States pressured in the bottom of the inning as Caitlin Lowe and Natasha Watley both hit singles to start the inning, and moved to second and third on a sacrifice bunt. Jennie Finch hit a grounder to third that was mishandled, allowing both runs to score. Finch later scored on a triple by Lauren Lappin as the United States took a 3-2 lead.
Canada came very close to tying the game with two outs in the top of the seventh, as Jennifer Salling (Port Coquitlam, BC) walked, followed by a single by Jennifer Yee. Kaleigh Rafter then delivered a single, but Salling was thrown out at home trying to score from second to end the game.
Kylie Hovinga pitched the two first innings for Canada, allowing only one hit and recording three strikeouts. Leah McIntosh pitched the two following innings and allowed three unearned runs on three hits, as she was awarded the loss. Jenna Caira pitched the final two innings by allowing two hits, notching three strikeouts.
Jennifer Yee and Kaleigh Rafter each collected two hits for Canada, while Melanie Matthews, Kelsey Haberl and Caitlin Lever rounded out the hits. Matthews also added a stolen base.
In other scores on the final day of round-robin play, Australia beat the Netherlands 1-0 and then defeated Venezuela 5-1.
Canada (4-4) will face Venezuela (2-6) in its first game of the double-knockout elimination round at 3:30pm PDT. The winner of that game will then face the winner of the game between the Netherlands (2-6) and Team T.F.S. International (6-1) at 8:30pm PDT. The two losing teams will face each other on Saturday morning at 10:30am PDT.
Canada Cup Final Round-Robin Standings International Division
For live scores and results, please visit the Canada Cup website at www.canadacup.com.
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