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Softball Canada – Santo Domingo, D.R. – The Canadian Men’s National Team locked up first place in Pool B with an important 6-4 win over Mexico at the X Pan American Men’s Softball Championship. Canada battled back from an early 2-0 deficit and put up four runs in the bottom of the second before holding on for the win.
Mexico got on the scoreboard early when the second batter of the game doubled over the left fielder, advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a single. The next batter singled to right and the ball got by the right fielder to allow the second run to score all the way from first to give Mexico a 2-0 lead. In the bottom of the inning, Kris Walushka (Victoria, B.C.) led off with a walk and advanced to third on a single to left by Kyle Ezekiel (Holyrood, N.L.) before scoring on a sacrifice fly to left by Jason Hill (St. John’s, N.L.) to cut the lead to 2-1.
In the bottom of the second inning, Patrick Burns (Saskatoon, Sask.) led off with an infield single, later followed by a walk and a hit by pitch to load the bases with one out. Walushka hit a two-run single to left, with two more runs scoring on a pair of wild pitches as Canada took a 5-2 lead. Mexico got one run back on an RBI ground out in the third, and the score remained the same until Mexico pulled within one run by scoring on a double with two outs in the top of the sixth inning to make the score 5-4.
Team Canada added an insurance run in the bottom half of the sixth when Walushka and Ezekiel started the inning with singles, Walushka moved up to third after tagging up on a fly ball to right and scored on a single to left Bryan Abrey (Richmond, B.C.). Scott Lieph (Sooke, B.C.) got a pair of strikeouts to begin the top of the seventh inning, and the next batter lined a hard line drive that was caught with a high leaping grab by centerfielder Ben Wideman(Fergus, Ont.) to seal the win for Canada.
Box Score: Canada 6 vs. Mexico 4
Walushka was Canada’s spark plug at the top of the lineup, singling twice, driving in two runs, scoring three and drawing a walk. Ezekiel connected with a pair of single while Abrey singled in a run. Burns also notched a hit in the win.Devon McCullough (Saskatoon, Sask.) started the game for Canada and allowed three runs – two earned – on six hits and struck out three batters in three innings. Lieph picked up the win with four innings of relief, giving up a run on four hits and striking out eight.
Earlier scores on the final day of the round robin were:
Colombia 5 vs. Aruba 2
Dominican Republic 11 vs. Aruba 1
United States 5 vs. Cuba 1
United States 9 vs. Puerto Rico 0
Bahamas 2 vs. Panama 1
Argentina 20 vs. Belize 0
Guatemala 8 vs. Costa Rica 0
Mexico 4 vs. Guatemala 0
Team Canada (7-0) finished atop Pool B and will face the second place team from Pool A in its first playoff game. Colombia, Cuba and the United States are all tied for second place in Pool A with 5-2 records, so Canada’s opponent will depend on the tie-breaker.
The tournament will take a pause on Thursday as the Dominican Republic braces for Hurricane Maria, which is scheduled to hit the northern part of the island. Santo Domingo is under a tropical storm warning with heavy rain and wind expected on Thursday.


For more information, please contact:

Gilles LeBlanc
Manager – Marketing & Communications
Softball Canada
p: (613) 523-3386 ext. 3105 | m: (613) 795-1996
w: www.softball.ca | e: gleblanc@softball.ca