Over the next eight days, the Canisius softball team will have the opportunity to travel throughout Italy to enjoy sights, sounds, food and softball. This page will contain a running blog of the trip and will also feature links to game recaps. The Golden Griffins are scheduled to play six games in all, starting July 19, against the Italian National Team.
REPORT #1 - Friday, July 18 - written by junior Tori Nappo
From Buffalo to Toronto to Rome to Forli - our first day of traveling is complete and the Griffs have finally arrived in Italy!
Everyone is ready and excited to get back on the field, and we are even more excited to be doing it in the beautiful country of Italy. With the exception of a few minor set backs (a few missing players and a broken-down bus) everything is going smoothly and according to plan. Being here in Italy for only a few short hours has made it clear that our "knowledge" of the Italian language can definitely use some work. That will certainly improve over the next week!
All-in-all, day one has been a success and we can't wait to see what the rest of the trip has in store for us. Ciao!
REPORT #2 - Saturday, July 19 - written by junior Meghan Cuda
After our long day of travel, it was finally nice to settle down and really explore the tiny town of Forli here in Italy. We woke up to a yummy Italian-style breakfast, which is basically all the pastries and Nutella you can eat.
After breakfast we decided to take a walk into town. The town of Forli is littered with boutiques and shops, but we were all in search of one thing - gelato. Some girls were lucky enough to have it twice in one day, once as a pregame snack and once after dinner as a delicious dessert. That only came after some serious prompting with chanting and cheering on the bus ride home from our games against the Italian National Team.
Considering we leave for Rome and Venice soon, I'm sure the rest of our Italian journey will be full of exploring, and definitely full of more gelato.
To learn more about gelato, click here.
REPORT #3 - Sunday, July 20 - written by sophomore Lindsey Silfer
After another enjoyable morning full of food and shopping it was off to the fields for the second day of games. I had a rough start due to the fact that I tripped walking out to the field when my name was announced. After recuperating from my embarrassing tumble, we came out strong and won the first game, just barely falling short in the second. The second game came down to an international tie breaker (how ironic.) Read the full game recaps here.
With this first set of games complete, we are all looking forward to an exciting day exploring the beautiful city of Venice.
REPORT #4 - Monday, July 21 - written by junior Bethany DeMarco
Today was day número quattro of our trip to Italy. We started off the morning bright and early, boarding the bus at 6:30 a.m. After a three-hour bus ride, we boarded a water taxi that zig-zagged through the waters of Venice until we reached our final destination at San Marco. We were all immediately fascinated.
There were plenty of little shops and cafés tucked into the side streets. Bridges crossed over the canals filled with gondolas, which many of us had the pleasure to take a ride in. After a long day of shopping and exploring, we returned to the bus and headed back to our hotel in Forli.
We were told that Venice is sinking and could be gone in 100 years so I'm glad we got to see Venice in all it's glory before it is swallowed by the sea.
REPORT #5 - Thursday, July 24 - written by sophomore Sam Sharkey
Today we took a day trip to San Marino, home to three castles in the clouds. Some of us peaked around in the Vampire Museum, some overlooked cities below from the highest points of the castles and others browsed the local shops. As the day came to a close, we enjoyed a three-course meal with a view at a restaurant suggested to us by Mr. Bambacci and he even paid us a visit so we could thank him one last time on our way out of Forli.
Only a few days left here in Italy but we're certainly making the most of our time!
REPORT #6 - Friday, July 25 - written by Valore Nappo
Today we wrapped up our last day in Rome, and unfortunately our trip came to an end. We all woke up early to squeeze in the last little bit of Rome before we had to leave for the airport.
The past eight days hve been incredible. Not only did we get to see many amazing monuments and churches, but we were given the opportunity to experience Italian culture while playing the sport we love.
From the Coliseum, to the Vatican, to the Spanish steps, we were introduced to many new sights. We were also introduced to carb overload and the bidet while learning that a medium "double-double" doesn't mean the same in every country.
The memories made in Italy were unforgettable. I couldn't imagine a better way to finish my career at Canisius and I wouldn't pick a different group of girls to do it with. The girls and I all want to thank Coach Rappl for the trip of a life time.
REPORT #7 - Saturday, July 26 - written by head coach Mike Rappl
It is Saturday after our trip to Italy - a time to reflect on what a wonderful experience 29 people shared.
It was fun and interesting to watch the girls as they were emerged in a foreign culture complete with attempts to speak the language- for the most part they were able to communicate- even if the pronunciation was off. A lot like my attempts to communicate with a couple if the bus drivers.
We toured on motor coaches which allowed us to stop at a number of authentic Italian restaurants. The meals were outstanding, including two dinners with four and five-course meals. Of course their was the Gelato and real Italian Pizza!!
I spoke with the team about the trip being a new beginning; for Jenny [Consaul] and Val [Nappo], this was a way to thank them for their four years at Canisius and send them off the new experiences as they pursue their future careers. It was nice to see Val have three hits and a couple of RBI in her final doubleheader in a Canisius uniform, and what a way for Jenny to end her softball with a homer and five RBI and then come back and pitch a no-hitter in her final game!!!
Thank you both for your efforts over the past four years
To the rest of the team it was a new beginning, this was a recognition of just how good they can be when they play together. Playing hard and being competitive against the Italian National Team, which will compete in the World Championships in the Netherlands in August, and team Foril that has eight players from that National team, was a great showing. Playing three one-run games against those teams showed how good we can be.
Some highlights from our trip:
Home base in the quaint town of Forli - a town that is almost as old as Rome...
A great day in Venice...
Community service at Caritas Forli- cleaning, painting, and preparing arts and crafts for the cliental...
A trip to the Republic of San Marino with all its history and beauty...
Exploring Rome in all her glory from the Colleseum, the ruins, the beautiful art and sculpture in the churches, to The Vatican and the fountains that were something to behold. We even ran into thre people that knew of Canisius and Buffalo! What a small world...
The 29 people that traveled in this group came back a closer-knit group and gained some wonderful memories that will last a life time. Thanks to all of you for representing Canisius, the United States, and the Canisius softball program. It was a pleasure - thanks for the memories!
Can't wait to see the DVD- there are over 4000 photos to select from!!
Head coach Mike Rappl