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Penticton players win women’s national championship
Amélie Pépin and Tanya Hall had mostly different feelings as they helped the Kelowna Fusion win the women’s B Canadian slopitch championship Aug. 5.
Pepin had tears when the championship in Kelowna was over. Hall was filled with excitement. While Pepin played with a talented, serious group, they always joked around and had fun.
“We have a great bunch of ladies,” said Pepin, who said winning was awesome. “That’s the biggest tournament we will ever have.”
After deciding last year they would compete for the national championship, Pepin said the Fusion built a strong team by picking up a few players. Hall joined the Fusion this season and ended up being chosen team MVP of the tournament by the coaches.
“She played awesome. She’s always awesome,” said Pepin of Hall. “She hit well and she didn’t make any mistakes on defence. I believe she made us win.”
“I felt I had a good tourney overall, batted well,” said Hall, who played for Fusion coach Darcy O’Heir three years ago and won provincials. “It was a real team effort. We had to work together. I see it as a team MVP. People had to be on for my hits to make an impact.”
Hall, who helped form a strong outfield with Pepin, said the MVP award does make the championship more special
The Fusion defeated Vancouver club All Fired Up two games in a row Aug. 5 after losing to them in the first game of the playoffs. Pepin said Kelowna’s iCandy was stronger this year than last.
“They gave us a run for our money,” she said. “The team from Vancouver, they beat us in the first playoff game by one run in the final. We had to come from the back door, beat them twice in the final. They gave us a hard time too.”
Making things challenging for the Fusion was the loss of their regular pitcher. The Fusion went to Ali Furgala, for what ended up being three do-or-die games. First, the team outlasted crosstown rivals iCandy to advance to the final where Furgala would earn two straight victories over All Fired Up, edging the Vancouver club 7-4 in game one of the final before blasting them 9-3 to win it all.
-With files from the Kelowna Capital News.