Canadian baseball stars Kate Psota, Ashley Stephenson retire

Canada's Ashley Stephenson during the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto. (Fred Thornhill/CP)

OTTAWA — Longtime Canadian national women’s baseball team members Kate Psota and Ashley Stephenson are retiring as players.

The 32-year-old Psota, of Burlington, Ont., and 36-year-old Stephenson, of Mississauga, Ont., both joined the program in 2004 and played in all eight women’s baseball World Cups and the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto.

They captured silver at the Pan Ams and two silvers and four bronze medals at World Cups.

Psota and Stephenson’s final game was an extra-innings 8-5 win over the United States last August in Florida, giving Canada bronze at the World Cup.

Stephenson will move into a coaching role with Canada.

"I love playing baseball and will definitely miss the feeling of competing in big games but there comes a time in every athlete’s career when it’s best to move on to new opportunities," Stephenson said in a statement. "This was the right time for me to close one door and look forward to new adventures and challenges that are ahead."

Psota is pleased with the growth of the sport

"I am most proud of how much our program (and sport) has developed and grown since 2004," she said. "There’s still lots of room for growth, but I never imagined when we started it would be at the point we are today."

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