THUNDER BAY – SPORTS – Former Women’s National Team star, Ashley Stephenson, will manage Team Canada at the upcoming five game Friendship Series against the United States set to take place at Baseball Central in Thunder Bay, Ontario on:
- Thursday, July 28 – 7:30pm USA @ Canada
- Friday, July 29 – 7:30pm Canada @ USA
- Saturday, July 30 – 1pm USA @ Canada
- Sunday, July 31 – 7:30pm Canada @ USA
- Monday, August 1 – 1pm USA @ Canada
“I’m really excited for this opportunity,” said Stephenson. “I’m grateful for the support of Aaron (Myette) and Baseball Canada and look forward to working with the rest of the coaching staff and the athletes in Thunder Bay.”
After wrapping up a 15-year playing career with the Women’s National Team program with a bronze medal at the Women’s Baseball World Cup in 2018, Stephenson announced her retirement as a player and immediately jumped into a role on the coaching staff. She was part of the staff that led Canada to a bronze medal at the COPABE Women’s Pan-American Championships in 2019 and in 2021 was a lead instructor at the Women’s National Team Showcase in Trois-Rivières, Québec.
Stephenson’s Team Canada is ranked third in the world in women’s baseball (not softball) and Team USA fourth. Last time these teams met at a bronze medal game, Canada beat USA 4-3 in dramatic extra innings.
Tickets will be sold at the gate on game day at Baseball Central, which is located at 950 Baseball Diamond Driveway, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 7A6. Just off Central Avenue (1 km west of the police station). Baseball Central was initiated in 1987 to house two baseball fields that now can meet international specifications. Game tickets are $10 for adults; $5 for seniors and students; and 12 and under free. Parking is free.
This is the first time Team Canada will compete together after Amanda Asay, a long-time member of the Canadian women’s baseball program, died following a ski accident at Whitewater Ski Resort near Nelson B.C. on January 7, 2022. Asay, a native of Prince George, was 33 years old. Team Canada will be unveiling a patch on their jersey in Asay’s honour while in Thunder Bay, and they plan to retire her number, 19. A moment a silence in her respect will proceed Thursday night’s game. Friday night’s game will have both teams celebrating PRIDE Season in which the LGBTQ2 communities and allies come together to celebrate the talent and recognize the contributions of LGBTQ2 communities.
The Friendship Series 2022 is being presented by Thunder Bay International Baseball, along with Baseball Canada and Baseball USA.