Two losses in seven games resulted in New Zealand finishing seventh at the women's world softball championship in Surrey, Canada.
The White Sox, who are coached by Hawke's Bay's Kevin Gettins, lost 8-2 to the Netherlands on Saturday. The eighth-seeded Kiwis' only other loss was against defending champions Japan on Friday when they were beaten 9-2.
The Netherlands, who were the sixth seeds, started the scoring in the top of the first with a one-run double off the bat of Dinet Oosting to score short stop Britt Vonk. Vonk scored again in the top of the third through Maxime Van and their team led 2-0.
At this point coach Gettins replaced his daughter Courtney Gettins on the mound with fellow Hawke's Bay pitcher Rita Hokianga. The Dutch wasted no time, with the first pitch being sent to the fence by Virginie Anneveld, scoring Oosting.
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Anneveld was a member of the Auckland-based Western Magpies team which won the New Zealand interclub title last summer. Van scored off a fly ball to the outfield to take the score to 4-0 to the Netherlands.
With two down in the bottom of the third, White Sox captain Ellie Cooper smashed a home run. But the Netherlands took a 5-1 lead in the top of the fourth when, with bases loaded, Hokianga conceded a walk to pinch-runner Shareday Christina.
Back-to-back singles from Kingsley Avery and Cooper with two down gave the Kiwis some spark in the bottom of the fifth. Lara Andrews stepped up and drove in one run.
Chantal Versluis added another run in the top of the sixth with a single to left field scoring Karin Tuk, who had previously hit a double over right fielder Danica Ferriso. Jessie Van Aalst completed the scoring with a one-run hit.
It was a disappointing day for the White Sox, who struggled with their discipline at the plate and the change of pace from the Dutch pitchers. Coach Gettins went through three pitchers,none of whom had the control and accuracy required at this level.
NZ failed in their bid to reach the top six but will take many positives out of the campaign.