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Pan Am Qualifier: Colombia scores late to defeat Canada

IBIÚNA, Brazil – Colombia scored two runs in the bottom of the eighth to break a 6-6 tie and hung on to beat the Canadian Senior National Baseball Team, 8-6 at the Pan Am Games Qualification Tournament.

The win clinches first place in Group B for Colombia while Canada finishes second and will take on Group A winner, the Dominican Republic, in tomorrow’s first semi-final at the Yakult Baseball Complex (7AM ET/10AM local).

Gold and bronze medal games are scheduled for Sunday.

Canada jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning when Daniel Pinero (Toronto, ON) was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded, but Colombia answered back with four runs in the second inning using a two-run single while an error brought in two more runs.

The lead was short-lived as Canada responded with three runs in the third getting two on a Colombian throwing error while Pinero drove in his second run of the game on a sacrifice fly to right field.

The scoring kept coming in the bottom of the frame as Canada reliever Jared Mortensen (Abbotsford, BC) was touched up for two solo home runs as the Colombians regained their lead.

Daniel Pinero knocked in his third run of the game with an RBI single in the fifth before Jacob Robson (Windsor, ON) knotted the game in the sixth on a base hit that scored Kellin Deglan (Langley, BC).

With reliever Andrew Case (Saint John, NB) on the mound in the eighth, an error allowed the leadoff runner to reach base before an RBI single and sacrifice fly later in the frame put Colombia in front for good.

Since Canada had already secured a semi-final spot, Manager Ernie Whitt used several pitchers including starter Phillippe Aumont (Gatineau, QC) and releivers Jay Johnson (Sussex Corner, NB), Jasvir Rakkar (Brampton, ON) and Dylan Rheault (Garson, ON).

UP NEXT: Canada’s semi-final contest against the Dominican Republic will begin at 7AM ET/10AM local and it is expected that RHP Scott Richmond (Vancouver, BC) will get the start on the mound…The best way to stay up-to-date on the action is by following Baseball Canada on Twitter