Canada Wins both Games of Doubleheader at Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championship

Published by Gilles LeBlanc

Published on July 17, 2014

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(Surrey, BC) The Canadian Senior Women’s National Team took both games of a doubleheader at the Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championship, defeating the NJCAA All-Stars 10-3 before downing Mexico 5-0. The NJCAA All-Stars had a 3-2 lead entering fifth inning before Canada scored two runs and added six more in the top of the sixth for the run rule win. Against Mexico, Canada scored two runs in each of the first two innings and the pitching duo of Jenna Caira (Toronto, ON) and Sara Plourde (Fredericton, NB) scattered six hits to earn the shutout win.
 
In the first game of the day for Canada, the red and white jumped to a quick 2-0 lead in the top of the first. Joey Lye (Toronto, ON) led off with a bunt single and was sacrificed to second by Victoria Hayward (Toronto, ON) before scoring on a two-run homerun by Kaleigh Rafter (Guelph, ON). A couple of walks put two more runners on base for Canada, but a pair of fly outs ended the inning. In the bottom of the inning, the NJCAA All-Stars got a pair of singles, but Canadian pitcher Sara Groenewegen (Surrey, BC) struck out the side to keep them off the scoreboard.
 
Lye hit a two-out single in the top of the second but did not advance any further, and the first two batters for the NJCAA All-Stars reached base on a single and a walk before Kate James hit a three-run homerun to put them ahead 3-2. Both pitchers cruised through the middle innings as both teams went down in order in the third, and the NJCAA All-Stars were the only team to get a hit in the fourth but could not advance the runner any further. In the top of the fifth, Larissa Franklin (Maple Ridge, BC) dropped a bunt single and Lye attempted a sacrifice bunt that was overthrown at first base, and missed by the right fielder covering the play as both Franklin and Lye raced all around the bases to score.
 
The following inning, Megan Timpf (Port Dover, ON) led off with a double and scored on a single to left field by Jen Yee (North Delta, BC), who advanced to second on an overthrow. Lye singled on another bunt towards third base to put runners on the corners, and Hayward singled to left to score Yee. The next batter reached on an error allowing Lye to score, and Carey-Leigh Thomas (Ohsweken, ON) hit a run-scoring single to left, increasing the lead to 8-3. Canada was not done there, as Megan Gurski (Dalmeny, SK) singled to plate pinch runner Chelsea Jenner (Abbotsford, BC), and Thomas later scored on an error by the pitcher as Canada put the run rule in effect with a 10-3 lead. The NJCAA All-Stars went down in order on three groundouts to end the game.
 
Box Score: Canada 10 vs. NJCAA All-Stars 3
 
Groenewegen went four innings to earn the win for Canada, allowing three runs on six hits and a walk while striking out nine. Brooke Seneshen (Winnipeg, MB) pitched the last two innings of hitless relief, fanning one batter. At the plate, Lye paced Canada with three hits and three runs scored, while Hayward and Thomas each contributed a pair of singles. Rafter had a homerun and Timpf hit a double, with singles going to Gurski, Yee and Franklin.
 
Against Mexico, Yee hit a two-out single and advanced to second and third on passed balls and Rafter walked before Gurski ripped a double to score both runners, but got caught in a rundown to end the inning. The following inning, Sara Hopwood (Richmond, BC) earned a leadoff walk and advanced to second on a groundout before scoring on a double by Timpf. Franklin then singled to put runners on the corners, and Timpf scored when Lye pulled a ground ball to first base, giving Canada a 4-0 lead.
 
Meanwhile, Caira held the Mexican bats in check, allowing a hit in each of the first two innings but striking out seven through the first three innings. In the bottom of the third, Yee hit a leadoff double but was later caught stealing at third. A pair of walks put two more runners on base, but a fielder’s choice prevented Canada from adding to its lead. Caira allowed a pair of singles in the top of the fourth with the runners advancing on a groundout to first base, but the next batter flew out to center to end the threat. The two first Canadian batters walked in the bottom of the inning, but the next hitter lined a pitch back to the pitcher who threw the ball to second for a double play. Hayward doubled to centerfield but the other runner was thrown out at the plate trying to score all the way from first.
 
In the bottom of the fifth, Yee led off with a single but was later retired on a fielder’s choice. Gurski advanced to second on a wild pitch and scored on a single by Hopwood to give Canada the 5-0 lead. Mexico managed a leadoff single in the top of the sixth, but Plourde – who came on in relief of Caira to start the inning – struck out the next two batters and induced a fly out to get out of the inning. Timpf and Franklin each hit one-out singles in the bottom of the sixth, but a fielder’s choice and a line out left two runners stranded. Mexico went down in order on two strikeouts and a fly out to end the game.
 
Box Score: Canada 5 vs. Mexico 0
 
Caira earned the win in the pitcher’s circle, scattering five hits in five innings with eight strikeouts, while Plourde only allowed one hit and struck out four in two innings of work. Yee collected a double and two singles for Canada, while Timpf had a double and a single and Franklin produced two singles. Hayward and Gurski each chipped in with a double, with Hopwood adding a single to round out Canada’s 10 hits.
 
Other scores of the Women’s International Division at the Canadian Open Fastpitch International Championship on Wednesday were:
 
- Japan 7 vs. Spain (Basque Country) 0
- Mexico 2 vs. Bloomington Lady Hearts 0
- Japan 8 vs. NJCAA All-Stars 1
- United States 10 vs. Spain (Basque Country) 0
 
Team Canada (3-0) will return to action with a big matchup with Japan (3-0) at 6:30pm PDT on Thursday. For live scoring and webstreams, visit the event’s website.

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For more information, please contact:

Gilles LeBlanc
Manager - Marketing and Communications
Softball Canada
(613) 523-3386 ext. 3105
gleblanc@softball.ca

 

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