Canada defeats Nicaragua in women’s baseball World Cup qualifier

Canada 19 Nicaragua 2

AGUASCALIENTES, Mexico — Amanda Asay reached base four times and hit a three-run triple to help Canada beat Nicaragua 19-2 in a mercy-rule shortened round-robin game at a women’s baseball World Cup qualifying tournament.

The game, which lasted just four innings, was Canada’s second straight dominant victory. The Canadians opened the qualifier with an 11-1 mercy-rule win over the Dominican Republic on Sunday.

Asay, a 14-year national team veteran from Prince George, B.C., drove in five runs total. The first baseman added two singles and a walk, and three runs scored.

“We have so many new players this year and Amanda has taken on a huge leadership role,” said manager Aaron Myette. “It wasn’t something we asked her to do, she just naturally stepped in and took that role upon herself.

“The younger girls look up to her, respect her, will go to her for answers, and we need someone who can lead these young girls. It’s fun watching the group together. There’s no division among the veterans and young ones, and I attribute a lot of that to the veteran leadership on our team, including Amanda.”

Britt Langlais of Garson, Man., earned the four-inning complete-game win. The 20-year-old right-hander allowed two runs (one earned) on three hits, with three walks and four strikeouts.

Canada had 13 hits in the victory, with every player in the lineup reaching base and scoring at least one run.

Right fielder Sena Catterall of Pierrefonds, Que., had three hits, three RBI’s and two stolen bases while Claire Eccles of Surrey, B.C., Edmonton’s Maddie Willan and Marika Lyszczyk of Delta, B.C. each added a double. Canada also capitalized on seven walks and three hit batsmen.

“We’ve had a lot of positives, which has been excellent,” Asay said. “Having a lot of balls in play and getting the chance to play some good defence, which we’ve seen, has been really great. We’re going to see more of that, and more powerful contact, so it was good to have a little bit of defensive play to get us ready.”

Canada plays Cuba Tuesday.

Canada, ranked No. 2 in the world in women’s baseball behind Japan, won the bronze medal at the last World Cup in 2018. Canada has six World Cup medals in total since the biennial tournament began in 2004.