ISF IX Junior Women's World Championship - Playoff #1

December 16, 2011

Cape Town, South Africa

ISF IX Junior Women's World Championship - Playoff #1
December 15, 2011

Canada loses playoff opener to Japan at ISF Junior Women's World Softball Championship

(Cape Town, South Africa) Canada's Junior Women's National Team found out why Japan is considered one of the top softball countries in the world as they were beaten by a score of 7-1 in their first playoff game. Japan outhit Canada 12-3 but Canada stayed in the game with some great defensive plays to get themselves out of several jams. Canada will now play Chinese Taipei, who defeated China 5-0 earlier in the day, at 7:30am EST on Friday. Canada is now in a must-win situation from here on out. The winner of the game between Canada and Chinese Taipei will face the winner of Australia (who lost 7-3 to the USA) and New Zealand (defeated Brazil 8-0) at 12:30pm EST.

Japan took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning that was full of action. With one out, Japan hit a line drive to the fence in right field and the player tried to stretch it into a triple but Jennifer Gilbert (Saskatoon, SK) hit the cutoff person Kristy Noble (Uxbridge, ON) who threw a perfect strike to Carey-Leigh Thomas (Ohsweken, ON) at third base who put the tag on the runner. Starting pitcher Jocelyn Cater (Delta, BC) walked the next batter and then hit the Japanese cleanup hitter. A two-strike single through the right side of the infield scored the first runner as she just beat the Gilbert throw to catcher Natalie Wideman (Mississauga, ON) at the plate. The second run came after a wild pitch that Wideman couldn't handle.

Canada threatened in their half of the inning when Gilbert bounced a slap over the first baseman's head but it was an omen of what was to come as Victoria Hayward's (Toronto, ON) slap was partially touched by the pitcher just enough to slow the ball down in time to force Gilbert out at second. Erika Polidori (Brantford, ON) then forced a walk and Jaycee Affeldt (Maple Ridge, BC) hit a slow roller to the Japanese second baseman who attempted to tag Polidori and then threw to first to retire Affeldt. It looked like the Japanese second base player missed Polidori but the second base umpire called her out on a close play. Instead of runners on second and third with two out, the double play ended Canada's inning.

In the second, Japan hit a one-out double before Cater got the next two outs to end the inning. Canada went down in order in its own at-bat. In the third inning, Cater got into trouble giving up a single to center field and a walk. Karissa Hovinga (Edmonton, AB) relieved Cater and the first batter she faced hit a hard ground ball past third baseman Carey-Leigh Thomas but shortstop Shannon Davidson (Whitby, ON) made a great play to come up with the ball and flip it to Thomas for the out. The next batter singled off Hovinga's glove and loaded the bases before a sacrifice fly ball to center field scored Japan's third run. Hovinga hit the next batter to load the bases again before Thomas got the third out by snaring a line drive.

In Canada's half of the third, Kristy Noble hit a long drive off the fence to lead off the inning for a double. Brigitte Aizprua (Terrebonne, QC) lined a shot off the first baseman's glove and was thrown out at first but Noble moved up to third. Gilbert was hit by a pitch and Hayward followed with a deep drive to left field to score Noble and cut the lead to 3-1. Affeldt ended the inning with a fly to left.

In the fourth, a one-out triple by Japan put a runner on third but was picked off by Canada's catcher Natalie Wideman as Japan tried a squeeze and missed the ball and Wideman snapped a throw to Thomas at third who made the tag to get Canada out of trouble. Wideman hit a two-out single for Canada's third hit but Davidson grounded out to second to end the inning.

Japan added four more runs on six hits in the fifth as the first batter grounded out to third and the second singled to left field. Wideman promptly picked her off at first for the second out but Japan had five straight hits to score four times before Madison Schreyer (Winnipeg, MB) came in to get the third out.

Canada and Japan never threatened after the fifth as Schreyer shut down Japan's offense.

Cater took the loss going two plus innings allowing three runs, four hits and two walks. Hovinga pitched two and two thirds innings giving up four runs on eight hits and Schreyer finished with two and a third innings allowing no hits and striking out two. Noble doubled with singles going to Gilbert and Wideman.

For all tournament information, please visit the host website at or the Softball Canada website at


For more information, please contact:

Gilles LeBlanc
Manager - Marketing and Communications
Softball Canada
(613) 523-3386 ext. 3105

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