Dutch Team back on the field
VALENCIA (Spain) - The Dutch National Softball Team returned to the field on Saturday to conduct a 2-hour practice session and an exhibition game against Great Britain.
Today, it was much cooler than yesterday when we arrived. It was only somewhere around 32 degrees Celsius, so a lot of drinking was done again.
In the morning, the Team went to practice for two hours (10-12 AM), concentrating on hitting, fielding and pitching and then returned to the hotel for some relaxing moments and lunch.
Later in the afternoon, the team left the hotel around 4 PM to return to the playing site for an exhibition game against Great Britain, which was won 6-1.
However, the score was tied at 1-1 after six innings!
There were several highlights in this game.
For instance, pitchers Rebecca Soumeru, Dagmar Bloeming, Kirsten Scheele and Femke van Dusschoten combined on a No-Hitter.
Only two Bristish batters reached base, but they accounted for the lone run of their team.
There were also fine defensive plays by 3B Virginie Anneveld, 1B Britt Vonk and SS Chantal Versluis and a 5-run rally on five hits in the seventh and last at bat of this game.
In the second inning, Rebecca walked Kristi Yoshizawa, who then advanced on an error in a steal-situation and moved to third base on a passed ball.
Next batter Kirsten Whitt then struckout, but the third strike was a wild pitch, enabling Yoshizawa to score the lone Bristish run and give her team an 1-0 lead.
The Dutch offense initially was silenced by British starter Stacie Townsend, who struckout eight batters.
With one out in the fourth inning, Britt Vonk reached on a bunt-single, moved on a single by Saskia Kosterink and went on to score the tying run on a 2-out single by Areke Spel.
The Dutch got two baserunners in the fifth, but both stranded, then British short stop Caley Roberts supported reliever Hayley Punter with a nice play on a grounder by Karin Tuk in the sixth inning.
But, the Dutch saved the best for last, as it rallied for five runs to win 6-1 in the seventh inning.
With one out, Anne Blaauwgeers, who had just entered the game as catcher, reached on a bunt-single, then Nadine Marinus (who had come in an inning earlier to play at first base) also singled.
The two scored when Solange Starrenburg reached on an infield-hit, which went off the glove of 3B Kristi Yoshizawa to give the Dutch a 3-1 lead.
Like Anne and Nadine, Solange also had just entered the game as the new leftfielder.
Solange advanced on a single by Meike Witteveen, which was followed by a wild pitch.
With two outs, Saskia Kosterink walked.
A runscoring wild pitch followed and then next batter Karin Tuk (who had come into the game in the fourth inning as catcher) singled to bring in two more runs and raise the lead to 6-1.
Pitchers Rebecca Soumeru and Dagmar Bloeming got the support of 3B Virginie Anneveld and 1B Britt Vonk, who both caught a line drive hit by British pitcher Stacie Townsend, while short stop Chantal Versluis made a great putout with a throw from deep infield.
Saturday ended with a dinner on the roof terrace of our hotel, which has a beautiful site of the city of Valencia.
On Sunday, the Team will have another 2-hour practice, then will have the day off (their lone moment off the coming week) so that everyone is able to do some sightseeing in Valencia.
Box Score Game Netherlands vs. Great Britain
Schedule European Championships
The Team on its way from the hotel to the field
Nathalie Gosewehr and Britt Vonk in a hitting drill
Petra van Heijst connects
In the meantime, Germany played an exhibition game against Italy
Nadine Marinus follows through
Head Coach Craig Montvidas hits another grounder
Full concentration for Catchers Anne Blaauwgeers, Karin Tuk and Nathalie Timmermans
Pitchers Femke van Dusschoten and Kirsten Scheele
Pitchers Dagmar Bloeming and Rebecca Soumeru
A break for Catchers Karin Tuk and Nathalie Timmermans and Pitcher Dagmar Bloeming
Areke Spel is about to hit a ball
Nathalie Gosewehr and Solange Starrenburg at a hitting station
Saskia Kosterink hits one
Head Coach Craig Montvidas keeps an eye on all the action
Virginie Anneveld brings the balls back to the hitting stations,
while Meike Witteveen and Chantal Versluis have a break
Another moment to drink some water for Britt Vonk, Nadine Marinus and Petra van Heijst
The last part of the practice
At left, Anne Blaauwgeers returns equipment
At right, Meike Witteveen and Chantal Versluis take some refreshments
Game vs. Great Britain
In the afternoon, the Team returns to the field for the game vs. Great Britain
Eh, the new starting line-up?
The stands behind home plate has some nice palmtrees behind it
But how do you get into your seat without a stairs?
Head Coach Craig Montvidas announces the starting line-up
Some special lines were put onto the field, for instance at second base...
...and this key-lock pitching circle
Today's Umpires Alvin Prenss Sánchez (HP) and Manuel Coronado (Field)
The Head Coaches have their meeting with the umpires
Meike Witteveen dives back into first base in the first inning
British pitchers Stacie Townsend and Hayley Punter
Dutch pitchers Rebecca Soumeru, Dagmar Bloeming...
...Kirsten Scheele and Femke van Dusschoten combined on a No-Hitter
Short stop Chantal Versluis eliminates a batter from deep short
Kristi Yoshizawa scores the lone British run in the second inning on a wild pitch
Britt Vonk reaches on a bunt-single in the fourth inning
and will score the tying run moments later
Anne Blaauwgeers at second base and Nadine Marinus at first base
in the seventh inning after both hitting a single with one out
Moments later, the two score on a single by Solange Starrenburg to give the Dutch the lead
Solange Starrenburg at second base and Meike Witteveen (who also singled) at first base
With two outs, Karin Tuk delivers a 2-run single
Saskia Kosterink scores the sixth Dutch run
Game ended, ready to go back to the hotel
Solange Starrenburg, who hit the gamewinning basehit,
enjoys the view of Valencia from the roof terrace of the hotel
A view of Valencia with at right the futuristic Museum of Arts and Sciences
The day ended with a dinner on the roof terrace of the hotel