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On Saturday, the Netherlands faced the Eckerd College Tritons at the Turley Athletics Complex in St. Petersburg, Florida for their first exhibition match before the World Baseball Classic. Scoring 16 of their 18 runs in the last three innings, the Dutch national team celebrated a lopsided 18-1 victory. The Tritons are in the Sunshine State Conference (Division II) and started into the 2009 season three weeks ago.
According to the Honkbalsite.com report manager Rod Delmonico used pitchers Sidney Ponson and Rob Cordemans for two innings each. Alexander Smit, David Bergman, Leon Boyd, Dave Draijer and Michiel van Kampen also got some work in. Vince Rooi hit a solo homerun. Kalian Sams had three hits in four at bats. Delmonico used 25 of his 32 players in the game. Ponson, Kenley Jansen, Dwayne Kemp, Dashenko Ricardo, Sharlon Schoop (two hits) and Curt Smith (two hits) made their national team debut.
The Tritons used their usual metal bats and managed just four hits during the nine innings. It was one of seven warm-up games for the Dutch National Team before the start of the World Baseball Classic on March 7 against the Dominican Republic. On Sunday the Netherlands faced the Korean professional team Woorie Heroes in Bradenton, Florida.