Luchanski delivers two-run double to keep Canada unbeaten

July 22, 2015


Canada avoids scare, earns comeback win over Puerto Rico


By Adam Morissette
Baseball Canada

AJAX, Ontario - A two out double in the bottom of the sixth off the bat of Nicole Luchanski (Edmonton, Alta.) scored two runs to lead Canada to a 3-2 win over Puerto Rico and run their record to 3-0 in the Pan American Games Women’s Baseball Competition.

Canada is now assured of winning a medal and will have the opportunity to book a ticket directly to the gold medal game with a win over the United States on Friday (7pm ET).

Today’s game ended in dramatic fashion as left fielder Niki Boyd (Surrey, BC) made a tremendous throw from the outfield to nab a runner at home plate that was trying to score from second base on a hit to the outfield. Canadian catcher Stéphanie Savoie (La Pocatiére, QC) did a tremendous job on the play to not only catch the ball, but also hang on to it after tagging the runner who collided with her at the plate. Both Savoie and Puerto Rican runner stayed down on the field before being helped off.

Puerto Rico didn’t waste anytime getting on the scoreboard as they used three hits including a single and a double to start the game and jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first.

Canadian starter Kate Psota (Burlington, Ont.) settled in during the second inning getting three ground outs in between a single, but was removed from the game in the third in favour of Melissa Armstrong (Saskatoon, Sask.) after issuing a one out walk. Armstrong quickly gave up a single and a walk to load the bases, but managed to induce a double play to remove the threat.

Armstrong turned in a terrific performance keeping her team in the game with three and two-third shutout innings. She scattered four hits and walk, and struck out six batters.

“Today just felt good, my arm felt really great,” she said after the game. “It was nice to be playing in hot weather – my arm felt loose.”

After being held off the scoreboard for the first two innings, Canada broke the goose egg in the third when Ashley Stephenson’s (Mississauga, Ont.) groundout to the right side brought in Jen Gilroy (Mississauga, Ont.) from third base. Gilroy had led off with a walk and moved to third on Becky Hartley’s (Vancouver, BC) single to right. Canada had a chance to add more runs in the inning as Nicole Luchanski (Edmonton, Alta.) laid down a beautiful bunt for a base hit and Bradi Wall (Swift Current, Sask.) walked to load the bases, but both were left on base.

Canada threatened again in the fourth, this time loading the bases with nobody out, but a force out to home and an inning ending double play got Puerto Rico out of a jam for the second consecutive inning. In the fifth, Canada had two runners aboard with one out on back-to-back singles from Bradi Wall and Stéphanie Savoie, but Puerto Rico got the ground ball they were looking for, turning a double play to end the frame.

At the end of the day, Canada played well defensively, received some quality pitching and timely hitting in finding a way to squeak out a win. With the United States on deck, Canadian Manger André Lachance is hopeful that this will continue.

“We built this team around defense,” he said. “Yesterday was a bit difficult defensively, but we came up today with a good performance. We’ll need this type of performance to have success (against the United States) on Friday.”

UP NEXT: After an off day tomorrow, Canada will be back at President’s Choice Ajax Pan Am Ball Park on Friday evening when they take on the United States at 7pm ET … The only way to follow this game is through Baseball Canada’s Twitter account (@baseballcanada) 

Canada 3, Puerto Rico 2
Team        123 456 7    R   H  E  LOB
Puerto Rico  200 000 0  --  2 10  0   8
Canada      001 002 x  --  3  7  1   8

Statistics
Canada
Name    Position    AB    R    H    RBI    BB    SO    PO    A    E    

LUCHANSKI Nicole, 2B 4    -    2    2    -    -    3    1    -    
WALL Bradi, SS 2    -    1    -    1    -    1    3    1    
SAVOIE Stéphanie, C 3    -    1    -    -    1    9    1    -
ASAY Amanda, DH-P    3    -    -    -    -    -    -    -    -
LALOR Kelsey, RF     2    -    -    -    1    -    -    -    -    
FLANNIGAN Jenna, CF    3    -    1    -    -    -    3    -    -
GILROY Jennifer
First Base    1    2    1    -    1    -    5    -    -    
HARTLEY Rebecca, LF 2    -    1    -    -    -    -    -    -
BOYD Veronika, PR-LF     -    1    -    -    -    -    -    -    -
STEPHENSON Ashley, 3B 2    -    -    1    -    -    -    -    -    
PSOTA Katherine, P -    -    -    -    -    -    -    2    -
ARMSTRONG Melissa, P -    -    -    -    -    -    -    -    -
Totals        22    3    7    3    3    1    21    9    1

Puerto Rico
Name    Position    AB    R    H    RBI    BB    SO    PO    A    E    

FELICIANO Luz Da.. LF-SS 4    1    2    -    -    -    1    -    -
IRIZARRY Kiara J.., RF 3    1    1    1    -    1    -    -    -
MARTINEZ Michelle, RF -    -    -    -    -    -    -    -    -    
BERRIOS Lisandra, 3B 3    -    -    -    1    1    -    1    -    
CLAUDIO Yinoska, 1B 4    -    4    1    -    -    9    -    -    
QUILES Diamilette, DH     2    -    -    -    1    2    -    -    -
GOMEZ Marleen, CF     -    -    -    -    -    -    -    -    -    
RIVERA Janiliz, C 3    -    1    -    -    -    3    2    -    
MARTINEZ Fiordelis, CF-LF  3    -    -    -    -    2    2    -    -    
PARADIZO Adrix Y.. SS-P 3    -    1    -    -    1    2    1    -                            ---
DAVILA Katiria, 2B 3    -    1    -    -    1    1    4    -    
ZAYAS Maria, P    -    -    -    -    -    -    -    2    -
Totals        28    2    10    2    2    8    18    11    -

Pitching Statistics
Canada 
Name    W/L/S    IP    Hits (H)    R    ER    BB    SO    HR    WP    BK
    
PSOTA Katherine 2.1    4    2    2    1    2    -    -    -    
ARMSTRONG Melissa W(1,0,0)    3.2    4    -    -    1    6    -    -    -    
ASAY Amanda S(0,0,1)    1.0    2    -    -    -    -    -    -    -
Totals        7.0    10    2    2    2    8    -    -    -

Puerto Rico
Name    W/L/S    IP    Hits (H)    R    ER    BB    SO    HR    WP    BK

ZAYAS Maria L(0,1,0)    5.2    6    3    3    3    1    -    -    -    
PARADIZO Adrix Y.. 0.1    1    -    -    -    -    -    -    -
Totals        6.0    7    3    2    3    1    -    -    -

Comment

Adam Morissette

Adam Morissette was born and raised in Ottawa, Ont. where sports were always a big part of his life whether it be baseball, hockey or football, including playing two seasons as centre for coach Pat Sheahan with the Queen's University Golden Gaels in Kingston -- Canada's first capital. Morissette has always have been passionate about baseball and has fond memories of attending Montreal Expos games with his father, Mike, and listening to his recollection of watching baseball in Montreal at Jarry Park and stories about Gary Carter, Rusty Staub and Steve Rodgers. Morissette could often be found in a near empty Lynx Stadium watching Joe Siddall, Bert Heffernan, Curtis Pride and Jamie Carroll soaking in a beautiful summer night at the ballpark. He was a member of the provincial championship Orleans Red Sox Little League teams also played with the Ottawa White Sox for the late Lyle Anderson and Todd Burke in OBA Midget and American Legion play and the Capital City Crushers (NCBL), primarily as a catcher. Has also spent time coaching Little League in Orleans and South Ottawa. He wanted to turn his passion into a career and enrolled in Sport Business Management at Algonquin College in Ottawa in 2007. After working for the Ottawa 67's OHL team as the Ticket Coordinator, Morissette jumped at the opportunity to become the Media and Public Relations Coordinator with Baseball Canada in 2010. He loves watching and reading about pro, college or amateur baseball and is a long-time subscriber to Baseball America. Morissette is thrilled about the idea of writing about baseball and is interested in covering any story that his car -- and time -- will allow him to cover.