By: Adam Morissette
AJAX, Ontario – The Canadian Women’s National Team put up a valiant effort, returning to President’s Choice Pan Am Ball Park less than 15 hours after defeating Venezuela in a semi–final game, but in the end it wasn’t meant to be as the United States won the first ever women’s baseball Pan Am Games gold medal with an 11-3 win.
The US took controls of the game early scoring four runs in the first inning and although Canada made things interesting as they closed the gap to two, the United States pulled away late en route to victory.
“I’m proud of my entire team,” said Canadian Manager André Lachance. “We had a great tournament and although this (loss) stings now, we will have a lot to be proud of when we look back (in the future).”
The US chased Canadian starter Vanessa Riopel (Repentigny, QC) in the top of the first as they used three hits, a walk and an error to score four runs.
Reliever Amanda Asay (Prince George, BC), who began the game as the designated hitter, took over on the mound and pitched well over three and two-thirds innings surrendering one run on three hits and a walk before Claire Eccles (Surrey, BC) took over to start the fifth.
Canada made things interesting in the fourth as they broke through with three runs to cut their deficit to two runs. Becky Hartley (Vancouver, BC) led off with a single and scored on Jenna Flannigan’s (Cornwall, ON) RBI double, before Amanda Asay walked with the bases loaded, and Kelsey Lalor (Red Deer, AB) grounded out to second base that allowed a run to score.
That would be as close as Canada would get however, as the US put up three runs in the bottom of the fifth, all on a bases loaded double, and added three more in the sixth to go up by eight.
The Women’s National Team program will now regroup and begin preparing for the 2016 WBSC Women’s World Cup in South Korea.