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Softball Canada – (Oklahoma City, Okla.) The Canadian Women’s Slo-Pitch Team made history on Canada Day by defeating the United States 12-8 in the inaugural Women’s Slo-Pitch Border Battle. After going 3-0 in the exhibition games leading up to the one-game showdown, Team Canada did all of its scoring in the fourth and fifth innings and played solid defensively to earn the win.
Canada was retired in order in the top of the first, and the Americans got on the board with a leadoff homerun in the bottom of the frame. The following inning, Canada got a one-out single by Kearstin Solberg (Ryley, Alta.) but a double play kept the red and white scoreless. In the bottom of the inning, the United States got a leadoff triple, but the next batter grounded out to short with the runner attempting to score on the throw but was thrown out first to home for an unconventional double play. Neither team was able to get much going in the third.
In the top half of the fourth, Michelle Lorenz (Toronto, Ont.) walked followed by a single by Patricia Simon (Big Horn, Alta.) with both scoring on a double to left by Paige Smith (Gretna, Man.). Jackie Bates (Langley, B.C.) followed that up with a two-run homerun and Kait Anseeuw (Simcoe, Ont.) also hit a deep ball for back-to-back homeruns to give Canada a 5-1 lead. Team USA cut the lead to 5-3 with two runs in the bottom of the fourth, but Canada came right back and added seven runs to its lead in the fifth. After the first two batters were retired, Fez Verboom (Shannonville, Ont.) hit a hard ground ball to the pitcher and reached on the error, and Simon singled before Smith, Bates and Anseeuw all hit run-scoring singles. Another single loaded the bases before the Americans walked in a run, and Jacqueline O’Quinn (Toronto, Ont.) tripled to right to clear the bases and give Canada a 12-3 lead.
The United States got two runners on base in the bottom of the fifth but was unable to bring them around to score. Canada went down in order in the top of the sixth, while the American scored three runs on a pair of run-scoring doubles to cut the lead to 12-6. In the bottom of the seventh, the first two batters were retired but a walk and a fielder’s choice put two runners on base with both scoring on a double. The next batter flied out to left to end the game.
Box Score: Canada 12 vs. United States 8
Smith had a double, two singles and drove in three runs for Canada, Bates had a homerun, a single and knocked in three while Anseeuw also homered to go along with a single and had two RBIs. O’Quinn had the three-run triple and added a single, with Solberg and Simon each contributing a pair of hits. Tonya Gudbrandsen (Langley, B.C.) also provided a single to round out Canada’s 14 hits. Lorenz earned the complete game win in the pitcher’s circle, limiting the Americans to eight runs on 11 hits.




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Gilles LeBlanc
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