Team New Zealand infielder Cole Evans hits a grounder against the Philippines during the Men’s World Softball Championships at Bob Van Imp park on Monday. Photograph by: Liam Richards, The Star Phoenix
BY SCOTT LARSON, THE STAR PHOENIX
SASKATOON, SK, Canada – When New Zealand’s Cole Evans came in to pinch hit against Canada on the weekend at the WBSC Men’s World Softball Championship, it looked to be a tough situation for a 17-year-old rookie.
The score was tied 0-0 in the fifth inning and New Zealand’s Black Sox had men on first and second with two out. Evans put a charge into a ball that had to be reeled in by a Canadian outfielder at the fence to keep the game tied. Canada would go on to win the game 2-1 but Evans showed at such a tender age he belonged at this level.
“I got in there looking for a good pitch to hit,” he said. “I thought, ‘You only get three strikes in an at bat so you take the most of each pitch that comes down. He threw a drop ball and I saw the drop spin, had a swing and came up just a bit short. But a strikeout or a pop out to the outfield is the same result.”
Evans is the second youngest player to don the senior men’s uniform. It just so happens the youngest player ever is Mark Sorenson, who is now New Zealand’s head coach.
“He’s on the team because he has earned his spot,” said Sorenson, who played on the national team as a 16-yearold.
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