Nobody should ever underestimate the power of Team Italy softball manager Enrico Obletter and his international network of connections abroad. The Italian skipper runs a tight ship with a boat load of talent, but sometimes he reels in something so big that words alone cannot describe it. Such is the case with the landing of Italian American secret weapon Emily Carosone.
After Team Italy defeated the Kingdom of the Netherlands 3-2 in Ostrava, Czech Republic on July 6, 2019 to win the European Softball Championship title. manager Enrico Obletter knew it would not be an easy task to repeat another milestone on the enemy’s home turf in Utrecht to earn a berth as the Europe/Africa representative in the 2020 Olympics.
Enter Emily Carosone, the former All-American softball star for the Auburn University Tigers in Alabama. The Florida-born infielder led her team to the 2015 and 2016 Women’s College World Series. Emily Carosone is Auburn's all-time leader in career batting average (.406), hits (285), runs (267) and on-base percentage (.534). She also ranks near the top of the Tigers' record books in RBI, doubles, home runs, slugging percentage and games started. After graduating from college, Emily Carosone played professionally for National Pro Fastpitch’s Chicago Bandits and Cleveland Comets. She currently serves as a volunteer assistant coach for her alma mater at Auburn University.
With Emily Carosone added to the Team Italy arsenal, the Azzurre women’s softball squad has a new weapon for the Europe/Africa Softball Olympic Qualifier, which takes place at Utrecht’s Sportpark de Paperclip in the Netherlands from July 23-27, 2019. Group B’s Team Italy (ranked #9) begins the international tournament with a contest against Botswana (ranked #43) on July 23 followed by a clash against Czech Republic (ranked #15) on July 24 and a battle with France (ranked #26) on July 25.
The Netherlands (ranked #10), Great Britain (ranked #12), Spain (ranked #35), and South Africa (ranked #28) are in Group A of the Europe/Africa Softball Olympic Qualifier. The top two teams of each group will advance to the Super Round carrying the result of the game played between each other. The top team in the tournament final standings will gain a berth for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Forza #Italia! #LetsMakeItHappen
by Roberto Angotti