MSHS, Westwood each win a game
MARQUETTE – It took awhile to locate their hitting shoes, but eventually Marquette’s bats awoke to salvage one victory at the Midland Dow Chargers Invitational high school softball tournament on Saturday.
The Redettes lost their first two games 6-1 to host Midland and West Branch Ogemaw Heights before storming back for a 15-0 pasting of Midland Dow in their final game.
“Midland had a good pitcher, but we just weren’t in sync at the plate until we had a talk between the Ogemaw Heights and Dow game,” MSHS coach Paul Seibert said.
The pitching shutout went to Marquette’s Morgan Seibert, who scattered five hits, struck out five and didn’t walk anybody.
Lydia Seibert and Amber Beaudry each went 3 for 4 with two RBIs. Beaudry also hit a double and scored twice.
Morgan Seibert and teammate Noelani Belton each went 2 for 4.
Marquette managed just two hits off Midland pitcher Kelsea Pohl in the opener. She struck out nine and walked none. Senja Liimatta took the loss, working 3 2/3 innings while allowing all six runs on eight hits, though she struck out seven.
MSHS got its run in the fourth when Courtney LaFreniere singled and scored on Angela Brown’s double.
Against Ogemaw Heights, the game was tied 1-1 until the West Branch team scored five times in the top of the seventh, keyed by a Bri Mairose grand slam.
“We kept leaving runners stranded in scoring position, then they came through with a big hit late,” Paul Seibert said.
Marquette got its run on an RBI single by Karlee Huuki in the third, while Hannah Johnson had two hits.
Morgan Seibert took the complete-game loss, allowing nine hits while striking out four.
At 4 p.m. Monday, Marquette (7-5) plays a doubleheader at Rapid River, while the Redettes JV plays at Munising’s varsity in its own twinbill.
At Newberry, the Patriots won for the first time, an 18-6 decision over Brimley in the opener of a four-team tournament on Saturday.
The host Indians then captured the championship by downing Westwood 13-3 in the finale. Newberry reached the title tilt by defeating Superior Central, while the Bays downed SC in the consolation contest.
In Westwood’s victory, Brimley scored four runs in the top of the first, but the Pats came back to build a 16-4 lead after three innings.
“That was a huge confidence booster to get those runs back in the first,” WHS coach Libby Nelson said of her team’s three-run first inning, “but the big motivator came in the second inning, when (winning pitcher) Kate Rankinen made a diving catch on a pop up for the third out.”
Rankinen went the distance, scattering seven hits while striking out six.
Shana Caliguri had three of the Patriots’ 12 hits and scored three times. Rankinen, Courtney Beauchamp, Hannah Salmi and Amber Salo each had two hits.
In the championship, Newberry built a 10-0 lead before Westwood came back with an inside-the-park homer by Lacey Pietro in the fourth and two runs in the fifth. Caliguri finished with two of her team’s six hits.
For the Indians, Ellie Young, Samantha Beaulieu, Bryanna McMahon and Lilly Harman each had two hits.
“Their pitcher is a freshman (Kelsey Huffman), but she threw with a lot of speed and still had good control,” Nelson said as Huffman recorded eight strikeouts and walked four.
Information compiled by Journal Sports Writer Steve Brownlee. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.