2022 Canada Cup – Day 3
Surrey, B.C. – The Canadian Women’s National Softball Team kept their undefeated record intact with an 11-3 win in five innings against the Netherlands on Wednesday. Canada struck for four homeruns in this game, with two coming off the bat of Kelsey Harshman (Delta, B.C.) including a run-rule walk-off grand slam.
The Canada Cup parade of athletes and opening ceremonies were held prior to game time, with a full crowd on hand to watch the Tokyo 2020 Olympic bronze medallists compete on home soil.
Jorde Chartrand (Weyburn, Sask.) started the game in the pitcher’s circle for Canada and retired the Netherlands in order in the top of the first before the Canadian bats went to work in the bottom of the inning. Harshman drew a leadoff walk and immediately scored on a two-run homerun to center off the bat of Erika Polidori (Brantford, Ont.). Two batters later, Kianna Jones (Surrey, B.C.) also sent a shot over the centerfield fence to give Canada a quick 3-0 lead. The red and white kept rolling in the second, with Grace Messmer (Surrey, B.C.) and Natalie Wideman (Mississauga, Ont.) starting the inning with singles before Harshman smacked a three-run homerun to right to double Canada’s lead.
The Netherlands got on the board with a run in the top of the third, loading the bases with two walks and an error before another walk forced a run to the plate. They then pulled closer by adding two runs in the fourth, getting their first two batters on base with a single and a walk before a double by Britt Vonk and a groundout brought two runners in to score to make the score 6-3.
Canada added a run in the bottom of the fourth when a pair of walks put two runners on base and Kelsey Lalor (Red Deer, Alta.) delivered a clutch two-out single to left. Then in the bottom of the fifth, Messmer, Wideman and Callum Pilgrim (Abbotsford, B.C.) all singled to load the bases before Harshman took a full count pitch deep to center for a walk-off grand slam to end the game on the run rule.
Box Score: Canada 11 vs. Netherlands 3
Chartrand registered the win, allowing only one unearned run on two hits and she struck out two batters over two innings and two thirds. Ruby Anderson (Victoria, B.C.) relieved Chartrand with the bases loaded in the third and allowed two runs on two hits with one strikeout in one inning of work. Morgan Rackel (Calgary, Alta.) pitched an inning and a third without allowing a run or a hit. At the plate, Harshman had another monster game against the Netherlands with two homeruns, two walks and seven runs batted in. Polidori added a two-run homerun and Jones contributed with a solo shot, with Alysen Febrey (Peachtree City, Ga.) delivering a double. Messmer went 3-for-3 with three singles and two runs scored and Wideman had two singles and scored twice as well. Lalor and Pilgrim each added singles to Canada’s 12 hits.
Canada improved their first-place record to 4-0 and will wrap up the preliminary round against Mexico (1-3) at 6:30pm on Thursday night. It will mark the first time the teams meet since the Olympic bronze medal game in Tokyo last summer.
Other Canada Cup scores on Wednesday saw the Philippines edge Mexico 4-3, Chinese Taipei beat Korea 8-5, the United States shut out the Czech Republic 13-0, Triple Crown Colorado defeated Australia 7-2, the Aussie Spirit Development Team beat the Calahoo Erins 9-3 and Australia blanked Korea 4-0.-SC-
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