Canada wins first-ever Olympic medal in softball, taking bronze with victory over Mexico

Canada won its first-ever Olympic medal in softball, beating Mexico 3-2 in the bronze-medal game on Tuesday at Yokohama Baseball Stadium just outside of Tokyo.

Danielle Lawrie, a 34-year-old mother of two who led the University of Washington to its lone NCAA title in 2009, pitched the final 2⅓ innings and got the win. She struck out four, including the last two batters of the game.

Former San Jose State star Emma Entzminger opened the scoring for Canada in the second inning with a two-out, two-run single to left off former Arizona star Danielle O’Toole.

With steady rain falling throughout, Mexico tied it at 2-2 in the top of the fifth when former Oklahoma All-American Sydney Romero scored her second run of the game.

Canada responded with a run in the bottom of the inning when Kelsey Harshman’s sacrifice fly to left scored Janet Leung from third.

Former University of Minnesota star Sara Groenewegen got the start for Canada and went three innings, giving up one run on three hits. Groenewegen might have had the most unlikely of all journeys to the Olympics. Three years ago, while her teammates played in the world championships in Japan, Groenewegen spent 10 days in a medically induced coma after being diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease.

Lawrie also represented Canada at the 2008 Olympics, when Canada was eliminated with a loss to Australia in the semifinals.

O’Toole, a former member of Team USA who switched to Team Mexico when Monica Abbott and Cat Osterman rejoined the national team, gave up three runs, just one earned, in six innings of work.

Softball, which made its return to the Olympics for the first time since 2008, will not be part of the Games in Paris in 2024.

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