Dutch Team beaten by Cuba in seventh inning; strong finish vs. Venezuela; Milestone for Montvidas
BARINAS / CARACAS (Venezuela) - The Dutch National Softball Team on Saturday continued its preparations for the upcoming World Championship by playing two more games in the Venezuela International Series.
After yesterday's confussion regarding the changed game schedule, the squad on Saturday played Cuba at 12:00 PM, which was followed in the afternoon by the match-up against Venezuela.
The Dutch lost the opener 4-0, due to a 4-run sixth inning, but finished the International Series with a strong and good game, losing 5-3 to Venezuela.
In the second game, Head Coach Craig Montvidas reached a milestone, as he coached in his 100th game for the Dutch National Softbal Team.
In 1987, he made his debut as the team's Assistant Coach, then was the Head Coach 1997-1999 and returned as Head Coach in November 2008.
After completion of the second game, the three teams flew to Caracas, where the Championship opens on June 23.
The teams of Cuba and Venezuela had to wait 45 minutes in the special chartered plane for the Dutch Team, who had to return first to the hotel for dinner and packing.
There was then a little delay, as the bus that was to bring the Dutch Team to Barinas International Airport broke down, but was replaced quickly.
After a 40-minute flight, the plane touched down around 11:00 PM in Caracas, where the teams were welcomed again by several camera crews, as well as the Minister of Sports Victoria Mata and the Governor of the State of Vargas, Jorge Luis García Carneiro.
During the flight, there were some fun moments, as Solange Starrenburg, Areke Spel and Dagmar Bloeming were playing on their Nintendo DS, seating behind some Cuban players.
As their games made some funny noices, it attracted the attention of the Cubans, who also wanted to play.
As Solange, Areke and Dagmar don't speak Spanish and they didn't speak English, it became a conversation with hands, feets, some gestures and some talking, but in the end it was a very pleasant flight.
When the team arrived in the hotel in Caracas, it was assigned to its own floor.
The same night, the team decorated the floor with orange balloons, banners and flags, making it the most beautiful floor in the hotel.
On Sunday-afternoon, a team practice is scheduled in Caracas.
On Monday and Tuesday, two international exhibition games are scheduled.
On Monday vs. the Czech Republic, on Tuesday vs. Canada.
The Dutch Team was informed of the schedule change after arriving on Friday-morning from Puerto Ordaz.
However, it appears that the series of games played at Puerto Ordaz and the ones played in Barinas are two different series, resulting in confusion.
The games at Puerto Ordaz were named Triagular de Softbol Femenino, with 'Triangular' designating the three participating teams Cuba, Netherlands and Venezuela.
After completion of the third day of playing, Venezuela was named 'winner' of the Triangular in some newspaper publications.
On Friday, a local newspaper in Barinas announced the series of games to be played there on June 18 and 19 as 'Cuadrangular de Softbol Femenino', meaning the participation of four teams and included Barinas as one of the participation teams in the announcement.
|Where is the team at the moment?|
On Friday, the Dutch Softball Team arrived in Barinas, a city in west central Venezuela with some 270.000 inhabitants and located 525 kilometres from capital Caracas.|
The original city was founded on June 30, 1577 by Captain Juan Andres Varela, who with this fulfilled orders of Francisco de Cáceres, the governor of La Grita, who had established a governate in 1576.
The original name of the city was Altamira de Caceres.
In 1786, the State of Barinas was established and the city became the capital of the state.
It was an important bastion of the partriots during the War of Independance.
José Cristóbal Hurtado de Mendoza (1772-1829) (left), the first President of Venezuela, lived and worked in Barinas.
Adán Chávez Frías, the eldest brother of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez Frías, is the Governor of Barinas State.
On June 1, 2008, he succeeded their father Hugo de los Reyes Chávez as Governor.
Their brother Anibal José Chávez Frías is the Mayor of Sabaneta, the city in Barinas State where Hugo Chávez was born.
Game vs. Cuba
At Estadio Bicentenario, with a temperature of 27 degrees Celsius, the game against Cuba remained scoreless for five innings with Dagmar Bloeming having a strong outing as the Dutch pitcher.
However, it went wrong in the sixth Cuban at bat.
Rebecca Soumeru took over the pitching, gave up five hits and four runs, resulting in a 4-0 loss.
The Dutch Team reached base frequently, but was unable to score.
In the second inning, Merel Oosterveld singled, but was caught stealing.
In the third, Anne Blaauwgeers walked and stole second, then advanced on a single by Nathalie Gosewehr, but the latter was eliminated, while the first stranded.
In the fourth, Virginie Anneveld and Solange Starrenburg singled, but both were left.
In the sixth, Virginie singled again and advanced on a wild pitch, then pinch-hitter Saskia Kosterink was hit by a pitch.
The runners moved on another wild pitch (by a new pitcher), but again were left behind.
Trailing 4-0, the Dutch Team got on base again in the seventh.
Merel Oosterveld singled, as did Fabienne van Uden with two outs, but then a force play ended the game.
Dutch starter Dagmar Bloeming gave up only one basehit in the five innings she threw and struckout three batters.
In the sixth, Rebecca Soumeru took over.
The experienced pitcher first gave up a single to Diamele Puentes, then three consecutive triples to Yanitza Avilés, Lidibet Castellón and Yaleisa Soto, followed by an RBI-single by Katia Coello, that gave Cuba the 4-0 lead.
Virginie Anneveld and Merel Oosterveld both had two basehits.
The line-up vs. Cuba was as follows:
Pitcher-Dagmar Bloeming (5 innings), Rebecca Soumeru (1 inning);
1st Base-Nadine Marinus, Saskia Kosterink (pinch-hitter);
2nd Base-Meike Witteveen;
3rd Base-Virginie Anneveld, Areke Spel (pinch-runner);
Short Stop-Chantal Versluis;
Left Field-Fabienne van Uden;
Center Field-Merel Oosterveld;
Right Field-Solange Starrenburg;
Designated Player-Nathalie Gosewehr.
Box Score Nederland vs. Cuba
The team leaves the hotel to go to the stadium
Of course, accompanied by their security guards
The team arrives at the stadium, then starts preparations
Everything is arranged very well at the fields, two ambulances are standing by
Nadine Marinus at bat vs. Cuba
An overview of the field
Dagmar Bloeming delivers a pitch
Short stop Chantal Versluis eliminates a Cuban runner
The stands were crowded again
Anne Blaauwgeers is ready to meet the ball
Fabienne van Uden lets a pitch go by
Kirsten Scheele handles the video-camera this game
Runner Areke Spel checks if she can advance
Game vs. Venezuela
The game against Cuba was followed in the afternoon by the match-up against Venezuela, which yesterday had beaten Cuba 7-2.
The Dutch Team played a good and strong game against Venezuela, but lost 5-3.
Venezuela opened the score with two runs in the first inning.
With one out, Yaicey Sojo tripled and next batter Yuruby Alicarte followed with an RBI-double.
A single by Denise Fuenmayor then made it 2-0.
In the next at bat, Venezuela doubled its lead.
After pitcher Lindsey Meadows opened the inning with two strikeouts, she gave up a single to Maria Soto, then back-to-back doubles to Yaicey Sojo and Yuruby Alicarte, that made it 4-0.
In the home of the second inning, the Dutch came back strongly when Venezuela started with a new pitcher.
Lindsey Meadows was hit by a pitch, then advanced on a double by Areke Spel.
The bases got loaded when Nathalie Timmermans walked with one out, resulting in starting pitcher Angibel Ramirez coming back into the game.
Next, Lindsey scored the first Dutch run on a sacrifice fly by Chantal Versluis.
Hereafter, Nathalie Gosewehr followed with a 2-run single that brought the Dutch within one run, 4-3.
In the sixth, Venezuela added an insurance run when Maybes Rodríguez was hit by a pitch, then her pinch-runner Arais Puertas advanced on a sacrifice bunt and scored on a single by Maria Soto.
The Dutch Team had seven basehits, including three by Britt Vonk.
Venezuela registered 12 basehits off Lindsey Meadows, who went the distance for the Dutch.
For Dutch Head Coach Craig Montvidas, this was his 100th international game as coach of the national squad.
The line-up vs. Venezuela was as follows:
Pitcher-Kirsten Scheele (0 innings), Lindsey Meadows (6 innings);
1st Base-Britt Vonk, Nadine Marinus;
2nd Base-Meike Witteveen, Britt Vonk;
3rd Base-Virginie Anneveld;
Short Stop-Chantal Versluis;
Left Field-Nathalie Gosewehr;
Center Field-Saskia Kosterink;
Right Field-Areke Spel;
Designated Player-Lindsey Meadows.
Box Score Nederland vs. Venezuela
The team is ready to take the field for the second game of today
Lindsey Meadows, who went the distance for the Dutch Team
Runners Areke Spel (22) and Lindsey Meadows (1) have a talk with
Head Coach Craig Montvidas in the second inning, with Nathalie Gosewehr being the hitter
Outfielders Saskia Kosterink, Areke Spel and Nathalie Gosewehr
Leftfielder Nathalie Gosewehr
The team has a meeting between innings
Britt Vonk, who was 3-for-4 in this game
After completion of the game, a Closing Ceremony of the Cuadrangular Internacional was held
The players were presented with a commemorative medal, here Anne Blaauwgeers gets hers
Chantal Versluis gets her medal...
...as is Dagmar Bloeming...
...and Lindsey Meadows
Head Coach Craig Montvidas, Coach Tracy Bunge,
Physical Therapist Sanne Oude Egberink and Coach Nancy Evans
The commemorative medal
A special moment for Virginie Anneveld
A photo with the stadium in the background
Nadine Marinus enjoys a cake after dinner, as she had graduated as Physical Therapist
She got the cake from he now colleague Sanne Oude Egberink
After arriving at Aeropuerto Internacional Simón Bolívar de Maiquetía,
the teams are welcomed by an honorary guard...
...music and dancers...
..and of course reporters
The Minister of Sports Victoria Mata is being interviewed by a reporter of Venezolana de Televisión (VTV)
And the music continues
One of the Venezuelan players participates in the dancing
And so is Yuruby Alicarte
Fabienne van Uden and Chantal Versluis are being interviewed by VTV
At the hotel, the unpacking starts
And of course, there is more music in the lobby
During the Venezuela International Series (or Triangular de Softbol Femenino), there is a lot of attention from local and national media, including coverage of the games played by the Dutch Team.
The Dutch Softball Team in the Venezuelan Media