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Softball Canada – Prince Albert, Sask. – Team Canada completed its preliminary round schedule with a 10-0 win in four innings against Hong Kong at the WBSC Junior Men’s World Softball Championship. Mac Fischer (Teeswater, Ont.) was the key player on both sides of the ball, firing a four inning one-hitter with eight strikeouts in the pitcher’s circle while going 3-for-3 at the plate with a homerun, a triple and two runs batted in.
Hong Kong got the first hit of the game with a two-out single in the top of the first inning but that was all they were able to muster at the plate. Meanwhile, Canada jumped out to an early lead in the bottom of the inning when Ryan Smith (Shellbrook, Sask.) doubled and scored on a single by Isaac Lefebvre (St-Leonard-d’Aston, Que.). A triple to left by Fischer brought Lefebvre in to score, followed by a ground out that pushed Fischer to the plate for a 3-0 lead.
In the third inning, Noah Baker (Kitchener, Ont.) led off with a single and later scored on a ground out before Fischer launched a solo homerun to right field. Dallas Kipfer (Kitchener, Ont.) singled and Brady Hogg (Thamesville, Ont.) doubled down the right field line before Troy Kosmynka (Warman, Sask.) doubled to left to push both in to score and increase Canada’s lead to 7-0.
Team Canada ended the game in the bottom of the fourth. Robbie Black (Glencoe, Ont.) led off with a single and scored on a two-run shot to left by Dawson Sellick (Tignish, P.E.I.), and after Canada loaded the bases on a walk and two singles, Jordan Pomeroy (Placentia, N.L.) singled over shortstop to push the tenth run across the plate.
Box Score: Canada 10 vs. Hong Kong 0
A total of eleven Canadian batters got into the hit column, led by Fischer’s three-hit performance. Fischer, Sellick, Lefebvre and Kosmynka all drove in two runs, with Kipfer and Pomeroy each driving in one.
In other scores on the last day of the preliminary round, Argentina shut out India 9-0, Mexico defeated South Africa 9-1, New Zealand blanked Guatemala 10-0, Japan edged Australia 3-2 and the Czech Republic held on for a 6-5 win over the United States.
Team Canada (5-0) finished first place in Group B and has earned two lives in the playoff round. They will cross over to play Australia (2nd in Group A) in their first playoff game at 8:00pm CST on Friday. Other playoff matchups will see Japan (1st in Group A) take on New Zealand (2nd in Group B) at 5:30pm, Argentina (3rd in Group A) will square off against the United States (4th in Group B) at 3:00pm and Mexico (4th in Group A) will play the Czech Republic (3rd in Group B) at 12:30pm. The five teams who did not qualify for the playoff round will compete in the placement round.


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Gilles LeBlanc
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