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European Championships - Day 5 - Tuesday, July 28

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Dutch Team clinch spot in second round

VALENCIA (Spain) - The Dutch National Softball Team on Tuesday secured itself of a spot in the second round of the European Championships in Valencia by adding two shutout-victories, beating Russia 7-0 in the morning and Austria 12-0 in the evening. In the three games played so far, the Dutch Team scored 30 runs and produced 32 basehits, while the three opponents were held scoreless and got only three hits.

It was an early day for the Dutch Team, as the first game started at 9:00 in the morning, resulting in the team having breakfast at 6:45 AM. Hereafter, it was on to the field, which we did by foot today, giving everyone a 10-minute morning walk. For the morning game, Dutch Head Coach Craig Montvidas handed the ball to veteran pitcher Rebecca Soumeru, who went the distance and threw a 2-hitter with three strikeouts. The righthander walked Russian lead-off hitter Olesya Gavrilova in the first inning, but then retired the next three batters. In the second inning, Daria Shembereva led off with a single, but again the next three batters were retired in order. In the third, Rebecca gave up a 2-out single to Natalia Sergeeva, but she stranded at first base, as the next batter flied out.

The Dutch Team initially was retired in order in the first at bat, but then took command of the game by scoring five runs in the second inning. With one out, Nathalie Timmermans walked and Areke Spel singled, then both scored when Virginie Anneveld followed with a 2-run double. Next, Petra van Heijst walked and both she and Virginie scored on a 2-out triple by Nathalie Gosewehr, who scored herself moments later when Meike Witteveen singled.

After not scoring in the third and fourth inning (leaving three runners combined), the Dutch reached the 7-run difference in the fifth at bat. Britt Vonk led off with a triple and scored when next batter Saskia Kosterink doubled. Saskia, who played in her 75th international game for the Dutch squad, advanced to third base on a flyout by Nathalie Timmermans, then scored the seventh and game-ending run on a sacrifice fly by Areke Spel.

In the evening, the nine starters of the Dutch Team needed one turn at bat to get used to the pitches of Austrian starter Erica Monetti, but then took hold of the game in the third inning. With one out in the third, Meike Witteveen (bunt) and Anne Blaauwgeers singled and advanced in two fielder's choice throwing situations. The bases were loaded when Britt Vonk walked. Hereafter, Meike was forced out at home on a grounder by Saskia Kosterink, but this was followed by a throwing error trying to complete a double play, but instead leading to two runs. Saskia then added the third run in the inning by scoring on a single by Karin Tuk.

The fourth run was added in the third inning when Nadine Marinus led off with a single, stole second base and scored on a single by Solange Starrenburg.

Two runs followed in the fourth inning. Britt Vonk led off with an infield-hit, stole second and scored on a single by Saskia Kosterink, which led to a pitching change. New pitcher Christin Farnleitner was greeted with a single by Karin Tuk, which increased the lead to 6-0.

The Dutch Team then took more distance with a 2-out, 6-run rally in the sixth inning, highlighted by three extra-basehits. With one out, Britt Vonk tripled and scored on a grounder by Saskia Kosterink. Next, Karin Tuk reached on an infield-hit for her third basehit in the game. Karin and Meike Witteveen both registered three basehits. After Karin advanced on a passed ball, Areke Spel drove the ball into deep leftfield for what looked like a foul ball. However, the fair sign was given and Areke was able to run around the bases for an inside-the-park, 2-run homerun. Virginie Anneveld and Nadine Marinus then walked and both scored when Solange Starrenburg doubled. Solange then scored the sixth run in the inning on the third single in the game by Meike Witteveen to make it 12-0.

Dutch pitcher Kirsten Scheele retired the first 12 batters she faced, but then her Perfect Game was broken in the fifth inning when Martina Lackner led off with a single. Lackner, who plays for Dutch champion Computer SOS Tex Town Tigers, was the lone Austrian player to reach base in the game. Kirsten settled for an one-hitter and struckout seven batters.

That softball really is a global sport and can be played by everyone, whatever background or religion, was underscored in this game, as Austrian 2B Denise Orlovits almost surely became the first Muslima to participate in an European A-Pool Championship.

Box Score Game Netherlands vs. Russia
Box Score Game Netherlands vs. Austria
Schedule European Championships

Today's scores
Pool APool B
Netherlands vs. Russia7-0 (5)Spain vs. Czech Republic1-8 (6)
France vs. Austria0-8 (5)Great Britain vs. Slovakia15-0 (4)
Austria vs. Netherlands0-12 (6)Italy vs. Spain3-0
Germany vs. Russia3-4

While most of Valencia still sleeps, the Dutch Team rises for an early breakfast...

...then an early warming up for the game against Russia

The Umpire-crew for the Netherlands vs. Russia game
3B Franck Lautier (France), HP Galip Sonmez (Germany) and 1B José Xavier Lopez

The Dutch and Russian teams present themselves to the spectators

The Dutch fans are ready for another game

The Head Coaches go over the details with the umpires

Dutch pitcher Rebecca Soumeru, who threw a 2-hitter

Russian pitcher Anna Moiseeva gave up nine basehits

Rebecca Soumeru delivers to Radika Veshkina in the first inning

With Nathalie Timmermans (walk) on first base, Areke Spel follows with a single

While coaches Craig Montvidas and Nancy Evans have a talk with baserunners
Nathalie Timmermans and Areke Spel in the background,
next batter Virginie Anneveld (17) has a talk with on-deck batter Petra van Heijst (13)

When the game resumes, Virginie Anneveld doubles in the first two runs in the second inning

Areke Spel scores the second Dutch run in the second inning on Virginie's double

Virginie Anneveld on second base after hitting her 2-run double
in the second inning, which opened the Dutch scoring

The two runners, who scored on Virginie's doubles, are greeted by teammates

Chantal Versluis turns to bunt in the second, but later flies out

Nathalie Gosewehr at third base after hitting a 2-run triple in the third inning

Moments later, Nathalie scores on a single by Meike Witteveen

After hitting her RBI-single, Meike Witteveen is greeted by Coach Nancy Evans

Next, Meike Witteveen is caught stealing

Saskia Kosterink checks the sign, then concentrates at bat

After hitting a triple in the fifth, Britt Vonk scores the sixth run...

...on a double by Saskia Kosterink...

...and is welcomed in the dug-out by her teammates

Areke Spel hits a sacrifice fly in the fifth inning to bring in the
seventh Dutch run and end the game

The team welcomes the seventh run that ends the game

The players of the Netherlands and Russia shake hands afterwards

Anne Blaauwgeers and her twin-sister Maaike

In the afternoon, Rebecca Soumeru answers questions of a reporter of KRO-radio

In the meantime, some of the parents took a bustour,
like the Family Tuk, Versluis and Bloeming

...and did some sightseeing of Valencia

An overview of Field 1

Off to the field for the second game of the day

The Dutch Team underscored their support of the BackSoftball-campaign of the ISF...

...by wearing the BackSoftball-shirts

The Umpires for the Netherlands vs. Austria game
1B Franck Lautier (France), HP Martin Moravcík (Slovakia) and 3B Galip Sonmez (Germany)

The team's line-up before the game

The umpire-coach meeting before the game

Dutch pitcher Kirsten Scheele gave up only one basehit

Austrian pitchers Erica Monetti and Christin Farnleitner

Austrian 2B Denise Orlovits

A view into the Dutch dug-out

Meike Witteveen and Saskia Kosterink running at 2nd and 1st base in the first inning

Anne Blaauwgeers singles in the third inning and later scores the first run

With this grounder, Saskia Kosterink sets a situation in motion,
resulting in a force out at home, but also two runs on a throwing error

Meike Witteveen is forced out at home of Saskia's grounder
and the catcher tries to complete a double play, resulting in a 2-run throwing error

Britt Vonk is one of the two runners who scores on the following throwing error

Saskia Kosterink has a chat with Head Coach Craig Montvidas after her runproducing grounder

Saskia then scores herself when Karin Tuk follows with a single

Nadine Marinus leads off the fourth inning with a single
and later scores the fourth Dutch run on a single by Solange Starrenburg

Britt Vonk steals second base in the fifth inning

Britt's steal seen from centerfield

Britt then scores the fifth Dutch run on a single by Saskia Kosterink

Hereafter, Karin Tuk also singles to bring in Saskia
Karin had three hits and two RBI's in this game

Dutch pitcher Kirsten Scheele prepares for another delivery

Martina Lackner hit the lone Austrian basehit in the fifth inning

Head Coach Craig Montvidas holds Britt Vonk at third base in the sixth inning...

...where she ends up with a triple and will score moments later...

...on a grounder by Saskia Kosterink

Next in the sixth inning, Areke Spel connects...

...and drives the ball into leftfield with Karin Tuk running on second base...

...Areke is waved home by Head Coach Craig Montvidas...

..for a 2-run inside-the-park-homerun

Next, Virginie Anneveld walks...

...and scores on the 2-run double by Solange Starrenburg

Nadine Marinus also scores on Solange's double

Solange then also scores herself when Meike Witteveen follows with a single

End of the game, players shake hands

Final score 12-0

The expanding group of family-members of the Dutch players

Chantal Versluis with Britt Vonk's mother Tanja

Nadine Marinus and Nathalie Timmermans relax after today's games

(thanks to Fred Versluis and Ed Kosterink for submitting several photos)

For suggestions, questions or requests mail to Media Officer/Webmaster Marco Stoovelaar: stoov@dutchsoftballteam.com

Last Update: August 14, 2009
Copyright Photos © 2008-2009 Marco Stoovelaar / Fred Versluis / Ed Kosterink.
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