Eddie Kohlhase

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New Zealand Black Sox victory glow will reflect on Nelson

Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

“We’re very lucky in Nelson because we’re very proactive in what we do. Our sport (men’s fast-pitch softball) is reasonably well accepted in our community, which is positive. I don’t think it’ll be forgotten about.” – Derryn French, Chief Executive, Nelson Softball Association

grant.martyHERE TO HELP: Marty Grant says he’s sticking around to help young Nelson players head for the top. Marion Van DIJK / FAIRFAX, NZ

By Wayne Martin / Nelsonmail.co.nz

NELSON, NEW ZEALAND – Some of Nelson’s softball hierarchy were in Auckland at the weekend to witness the Black Sox claim their sixth world championship crown.

For former Black Sox pitcher Marty Grant, who won three world championship rings from five campaigns, it allowed him to relive the glory days of past triumphs.

And for Nelson Softball Association (est. 1962) chief executive Derryn French, it signalled another positive step towards developing and promoting the game throughout the region.

Both were among the elated band of New Zealand supporters who helped to celebrate the 4-1 win over Venezuela in Sunday’s final.

While obviously delighted with the result, Grant said his overriding emotion was one of respect for the coaching staff and for a Black Sox squad that many had written off prior to the tournament.

“I felt respect for the coaches and for the guys who wanted to stick around and be a part of it, especially those guys who have been my team-mates in the past, people like Jarrad [Martin] and Thomas Makea especially, who’d battled to keep themselves in some sort of physical condition and form so that they could be a part of it,” Grant said.

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The captain and pitcher lead Black Sox to World Championship

Sunday, March 10th, 2013

nzl.jub.3web The New Zealand Black Sox celebrate their sixth ISF World Championship after beating Venezuela, 4-1, at Rosedale Park in Auckland, Sunday, March 10.

“No two words (world championship) sound so pretty together.” – Black Sox catcher Patrick Shannon

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – The New Zealand Black Sox had a couple of concerns going into the ISF World Softball Championship. Would their injured captain be able to perform at his world-class standard? And which pitcher would step forward as New Zealand’s go-to guy?

The captain, Rhys Casley, and the pitcher, Jeremy Manley, put those concerns to rest in grand style. Between the two of them, they helped lead New Zealand to a record-breaking sixth world softball championship Gold medal with a 4-1 victory over Venezuela on Sunday.

In front of a packed Rosedale Park in Auckland, Casley belted a three-run home run in the third inning to break a 1-1 tie. With the lead, Manley buckled down and pitched a gem, scattering four hits in going the distance.

For Manley, it was his second win over Venezuela. In the deciding winner’s playoff game, he shackled the South American’s on four hits and 15 strikeouts for a 2-0 win.

Along with its sixth championship, New Zealand won the gold in 1976 at Christchurch (shared with the USA and Canada after the tournament was rained out), 1984 and ’96 at Midland, Mich.; 2000 in East London, South Africa, and again at Christchurch in 2004.

After the game, about 3,500 delirious Black Sox fans – cheering and dancing in the stands – showed their appreciation for their national team bringing the championship back home.

“All the hard work and all the training was worth it,” said catcher Patrick Shannon, who helped the Black Sox cause with a home run. “We proved ourselves in the world championship. No two words sound so pretty together.”

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New Zealand Black Sox must bounce back against Argentina

Monday, March 4th, 2013

By Tony Smith / Stuff.co.nz

Softball World Champs - New Zealand v Japan, 3 March 2013
Black Sox coach Eddie Kohlhase must get his side up after their loss to Canada as they face a must-win tonight against Argentina.

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – The Black Sox coaching staff claim the plate umpire’s “tight zone” was a factor in their pitchers giving up a massive 17 safe hits in last night’s 9-7 world championship tiebreaker loss to Canada.

Head coach Eddie Kohlhase and pitching coach Chubb Tangaroa said the pitchers were forced to come in over the middle of the plate because they were not getting the corners called in the 3hr-25min marathon.

Tangaroa, a former world champion pitcher, said he was not blaming plate umpire Randall McLamb because he was “consistent for both teams.”

Canada’s four pitchers also gave up nine hits in a 26-hit slugfest that featured five automatic home runs (three to the Black Sox – two to Brad Rona and another by Donny Hale – and two to Canada).

But Kohlhase said the umpire “had a very tight zone” and “one or two calls in the field probably didn’t go our way as well.”

“I’d like to view the tape and have a good look at our zone, but certainly some of our better hitters…we’ll just leave it at that, I think…”

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The New Zealand Black Sox seek ISF World Championship crown

Friday, March 1st, 2013

Eddie Kohlhase, New Zealand Black Sox Head Coach

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – The New Zealand Black Sox men’s fastball team is seeking to win the 13th International Softball Federation (ISF) World Championship held on it’s own soil, March 1-10, at Rosedale Park in Auckland.

But Black Sox coach Eddie Kohlhase acknowledges it won’t be easy.

“It’s a very, very demanding draw,” he said. “Canada, Japan and Argentina are three of the big powers in world softball. It’s a tough draw, not just in terms of qualifying for the quarterfinals, but also building up some powerful momentum going forward. It will be a real test for us…”

“Canada Softball Canada has been New Zealand’s traditional rival at the tournament. Like the Kiwis, they have taken the crown four times, last winning in 1992, when they beat the Black Sox in the final,” Kohlhase continued.

But they also lost to the Kiwis at the final stages in 1996 and 2004.

“They’re always a very tough team to play,” Kohlhase said. “They have powerful pitching – they throw the ball very hard…”

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Softball: Black Sox coach sees US tour as chance to build

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

NEW ZEALAND – Black Sox softball coach Eddie Kohlhase regards his team’s upcoming tour to North America with a view to the future.

The team leaves today for a 20-day tour which will take in the Legends of Fastball Classic tournament in Kitchener, Canada, and the Peligro Tournament in New York.

“The youth component in our team is vital. We must keep on building this team and ensuring we have the mix between experience and youthful enthusiasm just right,” Kohlhase said. Continue Reading