BY WENDI REARDON PRICE
Clarkston News Sports Writer
Senior Abbey Tolmie is heading to South America this fall to play in the 2019 WBSC Americas U17 Women’s Softball Qualifier.
She received a phone call her hard work had paid off and she was selected for the Junior Olympic Women’s National Softball team for Team Canada, Aug. 29.
“I am very excited about the opportunity and am very humbled,” she said. “I thought it would be a long shot, but I received a phone call and was over the moon. I am so excited to play softball in college, it was one of my goals. But, playing for Team Canada and representing a country has been my dream.”
The last two springs Tolmie was invited to and participated in combines in Toronto.
“I had good combines and sent lots of videos over the summer,” she said, adding she also emailed the coaches to keep in contact with them as they couldn’t see her play during the summer. “I play in US tournaments as they watch national tournaments for Canadian teams.”
Tolmie explained after received the news heavy training began for the Junior World Cup Championship qualifier in Colombia, South America, where she will be from Oct. 6 to Oct. 20.
She will have four days of practices with her teammates on Team Canada.
“We will get to know each other and gel and then we will start playing,” she said, adding they are competing for a spot in the 2020 WBSC U18 Women’s Softball World Cup.
Tolmie explained she can play for Canada because she has dual citizenship and has been a citizen of the U.S. and Canada since she was a baby. Her parents, Scott and Stacey, grew up in Canada and got married there. They moved to the United States before Abbey was born for Scott’s work.
“Canada has always been really important to me with all my family living there,” Abbey said. “It’s my favorite place.”
Abbey added school is important to her and has already talked to Clarkston High School Principal Gary Kaul as well as Jeff Kosin, athletic director, and her coaches Kelly Pinner, varsity volleyball, and Don Peters, varsity softball.
“I’ve got all my ducks in a row so I am excited about it,” she said.
Abbey added the experience with her travel ball teams as well as playing on the Clarkston Varsity Softball team since her freshman year will help against the competition.
“My travel programs and my varsity teams have put me in situations across the years, I am just so ready to compete at the next level,” she said. “They have supported me in every way possible and pushing me through every practice and game situations to be the best version of myself. I am thankful for that and I am thankful for all of them.”
She added the Clarkston community has been amazing the last week.
“There’s been so many people in Clarkston who have either emailed me or saw me and congratulated me. It’s really nice to know you have a town so special in your corner when I go to Colombia and compete with Team Canada.”
Tolmie’s teammates include Samantha Ryan from New York; Kaitlyn Achtermeier, Deanna Grahek, Amy Hughes, Shelby Miller, from Ontario; Lauren Benson, Emma Dorval, Ella Herrewig, Katie Korstrom, Madelyn McKinnon, Erin Murphy, Rawnie Weststrate, from British Columbia; Olivia Goderis, from Manitoba; and Annabelle Guay, from Quebec.
The coaches include Melissa Finley, head coach; Melissa Basilio, Russell Cooper, Daniel Joly, assistant coaches.
For more information and to follow the team, please visit www.softball.ca.