Roster Finalized for NJCAA Baseball All-Stars; Team to Begin Preparation for Honkbal Tournament in Netherlands

Follow the NJCAA Baseball All-Stars as they represent the United States at the 2010 Honkbal Tournament in Haarlem, Netherlands at www.njcaausabaseball.wordpress.com

 
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The NJCAA Baseball Coaches Association is proud to announce the official roster for this year’s NJCAA Baseball All-Star team has been finalized. This year’s team is a special one as it will represent the United States at the 2010 Honkbal Tournament in Haarlem, Netherlands this July.

Dave Grant, President of the NJCAA Baseball Coaches Association, is excited about the roster and believes the team will compete very well in Europe.

NJCAA All-Star Coaches (from top): Jeff Willis, Marc Rardin and John Stratton

“This a roster loaded with some of the best players in the NJCAA,” said Grant. “Hats off to all the coaches who nominated players. Also, our staff of Rick Hitt, Jeff Willis, Marc Rardin and John Stratton worked tirelessly to get the roster finalized. The selection process is finally over and they can now concentrate on preparing the team for this great tournament.”

The 24-member team (listed here) will represent the NJCAA and the United States in Haarlem, Netherlands at one of the most prestigious international amateur baseball events –Haarlemse Honkbal Week. The tournament runs every other year and the 2010 edition marks the 25th anniversary of the event. USA Baseball’s collegiate team won the 2008 tournament by defeating Cuba in the title game.

The 2010 Honkbal Tournament will take place July 9-18 at Pim Mulier Stadium in Haarlem, Netherlands. The tournament field features six teams from around the world, including Cuba, Japan, Netherlands, Chinese Taipei, Venezuela and the United States. Teams will play a single round robin and then advance to a semi-final round as well as fifth place and third place contests.

As Grant stated, the NJCAA All-Star roster is loaded with talent. The roster includes five NJCAA All-Americans, five recent selections from the 2010 MLB First-Year Player Draft and this year’s ABCA NJCAA Division II Player of the Year. Even more impressive is the team’s coaching staff. Jeff Willis of LSU – Eunice will be the head coach with Marc Rardin of Iowa Western Community College and John Stratton of Arizona Western College severing as assistant coaches.

Willis guided his LSU – Eunice (La.) Bengals to the 2010 NJCAA DII World Series title, which marked his third national title since taking over the program in 2003. The Iowa Western Reivers won the NJCAA DI World Series Championship in the program’s fifth national tournament appearance under Rardin. Their victory also marked the first national championship in DI baseball by a team from the Northern District. Stratton guided a young Arizona Western Matador team to a 28-27 finish this season. He currently has 793 career victories as an NJCAA head coach.

“There is no question that this team has a championship caliber coaching staff,” said Grant. “Willis and Rardin led their teams to unbelievable seasons and Stratton inched closer to 800 career wins as a head coach. These guys know the game of baseball very well and will put this team in the best position to win in what should be a very competitive tournament.”

NJCAA All-Star players and coaches will meet in Tampa, Fla., July 4th – 6th where they will practice on the campus of University of Tampa. The team will depart for the Netherlands on July 7th and play their first game of the tournament against Chinese Taipei on July 9th.

Follow the NJCAA Baseball All-Stars Online
Fans can find more information on the NJCAA Baseball All-Stars and follow all the action from the Honkbal Tournament via the team’s official website at www.njcaausabaseball.wordpress.com.

Links to live stats, video and audio of all Honkbal Tournament games as well as additional information on the event can be found at www.honkbalweek.nl.

Special Thanks
The NJCAA Baseball Coaches Association along with the NJCAA National Office would like to thank the following sponsors for their support of this year’s NJCAA Baseball All-Stars.

            – Rawlings
            – Easton
            – Mizuno
            – Outdoor Cap Sports
            – Beam Team Design
            – University of Tampa Baseball

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