Dundalk Minor Softball was excited to welcome pitcher Jenna Caira of the Canadian bronze medal softball team to town recently.
The visit was thanks to her friendship with the family of Christ Wight, who is on the executive of Dundalk Minor softball.
The visit was arranged within a couple days, when Jenna said she had a spot in her schedule to do it.
“The reactions were great – they absolutely loved it,” reported Chris Wight. “It was awesome.”
While there, Jenna offered suggestions to the young people on how to approach everything from school, everyday life and baseball – both to have fun and to be serious enough to improve.
Tokyo was Jenna’s first Olympic Games, where her pitching contributed to the Canadian women’s bronze medal in softball.
She had competed for Canada in three Pan-Am Games (gold medal in 2015 in Toronto) and four times in the Women’s World Softball Championships.
Jenna, who is from Toronto, went to school at Syracuse from 2009-2012, where she was the first to have more than 1,000 strike-outs. She was the first pitcher in Big East Conference history to reach the thousand mark. She coached at Syracuse in 2013 and 2014.
Softball’s come-back to the Olympics, after being dropped after Beijing in 2008, made Jenna’s dream come true. Her bio mentions that there’s a video of her sharing her Olympic ambitions at age four!
The visit took place on Wednesday evening, Aug. 25 with an opportunity for a meet and greet and a chance to see the Olympic medal.
Following that. she took on “guest coach” duties for a couple innings when the U19 girls team took on the Markdale ladies team in the rec league.
The organizers said afterwards that it was a great experience for the kids to listen to some stories, get advice and have the chance to hang out for a bit with her. She takes many good wishes from those she met locally along with her on all her future endeavours!
M.T. Fernandes, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Dundalk Herald