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Updated: March 4, 2013
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Grand Slam/Marco Stoovelaar

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Former coach, umpire, player Teun van den Berg passed away


...Teun van den Berg...
(1924 - 2013)

HAARLEM (Neth.) - Former softball-coach Teun van den Berg, who also played baseball, was an umpire and a wellknown soccer-keeper, has passed away on Saturday, March 2 at the age of 88 after a brief illness.

On Thursday, March 7, from 6:30-7:15 PM, it is possible to say goodbye to Teun at Yarden Uitvaartcentrum Kennemerland, Zijlweg 183 in Haarlem. The memorial and cremation ceremony will be held on Friday, March 8 at 12:30 PM at the Yarden Crematorium, located at teh Vergierdeweg 271 in Haarlem.

Teunis (Teun) van den Berg (born April 2, 1924 in Halfweg) is probably known to most of us in the softball-family for his impressive and successful career as coach of the women-softballteam of Terrasvogels. But Teun also was a very successful keeper for the Haarlem-based EDO-soccerteam, played baseball for EDO and Schoten and was a baseball-umpire for several years.

Van den Berg led the team of Terrasvogels for fourteen seasons in three different periods, spanning three decades. In his fourteen years with Terrasvogels, he guided the team to four Dutch championships and won two European Cups.

...Teun van den Berg with one of his favorite...
...players Ludy van Mourik during a special... during the 50th anniversary of...
...Terrasvogels in 2008...
(© Photo: Marco Stoovelaar)
Teun van den Berg was the longtime and very reliable goalkeeper for the soccer-team of EDO, wearing his familiar brown cap with a long peak. He became a member of EDO on March 31, 1940 and made his debut in the main team on February 20, 1944. He went on to play more than 300 games and not only became known as a very solid keeper. No one could miss that Van den Berg was in the goal, as he was very actively a part of the game, especially through his noisily presence, giving advice to and cheering his teammates. Van den Berg was the goalkeeper for EDO from 1950-1963 and became a legendary club-icon. With EDO, he played at the highest soccer-level until professional soccer made its entrance. He was elected several times in the Haarlem All Star Team and also has been a member of the professional soccer commission. Van den Berg was a Member of Merit at EDO.

A year after making his debut in the main soccer-team of EDO, Van den Berg began his baseball-career at the same club in 1945, which also played in the highest division. He went to Schoten, also from Haarlem, in 1949 and retired as a player in 1957, the year in which Schoten won the Dutch championship. As a baseball-player, Van den Berg had the same presence as when he was on a soccer-field. No one could miss that he was there, as he had the same enthousiasm cheering his teammates, but also his liveliness when he was a (speedy) baserunner.

...Teun van den Berg as keeper (right)...
(© Photo: Archive EDO)
In the meantime, Van den Berg also has started a career as baseball-umpire, but also officiated in softball-games in the seventies. He became one of the leading and most respected umpires in the fifties and early sixties, especially through his knowledge of the rules. Therefore, in 1961, he was a member of the umpire-crew that officiated during the first Haarlem Baseball Week.

In the early sixties, Teun van den Berg got involved in softball. In 1966, he became the Head Coach of Terrasvogels, which back then started to become one of the leading clubs. In his first year, Terrasvogels won the championship in District West I, remained unbeaten (15-0 with one tie) and promoted to the just established Dutch big league. Since then, the club plays in the highest division. In only the third year at the highest level, Terrasvogels won its first championship-title. Van den Berg went on to lead the team through the 1972 season and then stepped down. However, after one year, he returned to the team and was its Head Coach again for six more seasons. In these 13 years, Terrasvogels won the Dutch championship in 1969, 1971, 1975 and 1979 and won the European Cup in 1978. Van den Berg, who was well-respected as coach, retired after the 1979 season, but then, in 1986, coached Terrasvogels one more time, won the European Cup again and then retired definitively. In his coaching-career at Terrasvogels, Van den Berg led the team in 324 games, winning 245 of them.

...Teun van den Berg as coach of Terrasvogels...
(© Photo: Archive Ludy van Mourik)
As a coach, Van den Berg didn't change his enthousiastic character and was very involved with all activities on and off the field of his team. Teun was a coach who stimulated his players through his own enthousiasm, but could also be the leader when needed. He argued with umpires when that was necessary, but also could share a laugh with them, being a former umpire himself. And, by the way, he also wore a cap, as he did since making his debut as a soccer-keeper. And he kept on wearing a cap after his retirement as coach.

While coaching Terrasvogels, some of the best Dutch players played for him, including his daughter Renée van den Berg, Ludy van Mourik, Gerda Treuren, Elly Zweers, Hanneke van der Werf, Jet Jonker, Ineke Akkerman, Ria Disselköter, Ria Duijn, Wil Dortmundt, Christianne Oudendijk, Els Koks, Marit Kreischer and Marjan de Vries. That he was a successful coach is underscored that most of them also were selected for the Dutch National Team. In his final coaching-year in 1986, National Team-players Diana Verhoef, Marinka Stuvel, Willy Rietman, Francis Handgraaf, Ingeborg Cleeren and Linda Landwehr played for Terrasvogels. In 2000, he was named Member of Merrit of Terrasvogels.

After retiring as a coach, Teun van den Berg remained a frequent visitor of Terrasvogels-games. He traveled to the playing site on his bike at a high age and did so until the beginning of last season.

Teun van den Berg was a very likeable person, who will surely be missed by his many friends in softball, soccer and baseball. Whether he was his enthousiatic self or was the firm coach, he always did it with a smile on his face. That smile was as characteristic as his enthousiasm. He was a soccer-icon at EDO, but he surely was a softball-icon at Terrasvogels.

Through this, the webmaster of Grand Slam * Stats & News offers his condolences and wishes Teun's family a lot of strength.

(March 4)

...The first championship-team in 1969...
...Teun van den Berg is on the right...
...standing on the left is his assistant Hans Janssen...

...The fourth championship-team in 1979...
...Teun van den Berg is standing on the left... right is his longtime assistant Bram van der Werf...
(© Both Photos: Archive Ludy van Mourik)

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