July 28, 2021

Softball, Itala European champion: beaten Holland, now Tokyo

A confirmation dedicated to the manager Obletter, who died due to Covid, sixth home run for Piancastelli

In Castions di Strada (Ud), the Italy of softball confirms itself as European champion after an impeccable tournament marked by 11 consecutive victories. In the final the Italians beat Holland 9-5 for the second time after Friday’s 2-1. Another great test, this time a comeback for the unbeaten blue, with a pyrotechnic crescendo of swing and points that seals a great adventure on Friulian diamonds. A really well managed championship, and considered as an Olympic dress rehearsal. A test successfully passed by the national team, author of 23 home runs. For Italy it is also the 12th continental title against 10 of the historical opponents. And this triumph has a very particular flavor, because it is dedicated to Enrico Obletter, the historic manager who died at the Covid home on February 22 last. Now for the national team led by Federico Pizzolini the approach to the Tokyo Games: the debut is scheduled against the United States on 21 July in Fukushima. A team that dreams for the six-man tournament: equipped to enter the medal game.

The match

Dutch start with a 0-3 in the first inning, but already in the attacking turn the blues react with the first point. In the second, Giulia Longhi’s triple opens the way to the comeback, made by the 3-2 beaten by Elisa Cecchetti and the equal favored by Emily Carosone. Until the 4-3 of the last blue club of the up line arrives, Giulia Koutsoyanopoulos. Even in the third inning, Italy wreaks havoc on the Dutch diamond even if a double game thwarts the operations. In the 4th round Andrea Howard sends home runs for 6-3 (Giulia Koutsoyanopoulos also scores). Skip the third orange pitcher. But also the sixth 2-point home run (Carosone also scored) in the review of the super star Erika Piancastelli: 8-3. Italy secures the result, while the defense remains careful to protect the work on the platform of Greta Cecchetti, author of 7 strikeouts against 5 valid conceded. At 5 ° Italy could spread but Holland cancels the full bases. At the 6th a great defensive double game extinguishes the last ambitions of the rivals. In attack, however, the 9th blue point matures with the line of Beatrice Ricchi, then the Netherlands avoids the manifest by loading the bases and scores 2 points with a home run from Wissink. Sale Alexia Lacatena, born in 2002, who keeps his nerve and, putting two outs in a row, completes the triumph, releasing tears for Enrico Obletter, who from heaven will be proud of these girls, now awaited by another extraordinary adventure in the next weeks, in Tokyo, in the Olympic tournament. Meanwhile, gold is after a thrilling ending.