Softball: Black Sox fail to medal at world championship, lose bronze-medal playoff

ck Sox manger Mark Sorenson.
Black Sox manger Mark Sorenson. Photo credit: Photosport

The Black Sox have missed out on a medal at the world softball championship for the first time in 39 years, after losing to Canada in the bronze medal playoff.

Canada clinched a come-from-behind 2-1 win that ended a rather disappointing campaign for Mark Sorenson's side, who finished the tournament with five wins and five losses.

The result marks just the third time New Zealand will return from the tournament without a medal in its 53-year history. They were fourth in 1980 at Tacoma, Washington, and fifth at Oklahoma City in 1968.

New Zealand took the lead with a home run to Reilly Makea in the top of the fourth inning. Canada replied in their next turn at bat to tie it up 1-1.

Canada's momentum continued with another run in the sixth to edge ahead 2-1, before NZ starting pitcher Josh Pettett was replaced with reliever Nik Hayes, who closed out the game.

New Zealand lost to Japan in the semi-finals by the same score-line, which saw them miss the final for the first time in 11 tournaments, after contesting the gold-medal match since 1984.

Meanwhile, Argentina created history by beating Japan 4-3 in an extra-innings gold medal match - the first time the South American nation had won the title.

USA beat Venezuela 5-4 to finish fifth, while Australia beat hosts the Czech Republic in the seventh-placed playoff.