Northern Storm 16U team dominates in Traverse City Northern Classic

MARQUETTE – The Northern Storm 16-and-under girls softball team won the Traverse City Northern Classic Fastpitch Tournament in dominating fashion.

The team, made up of athletes from Marquette, Negaunee, Houghton and Gladstone, won three of four games in their pool, then dropped the West Michigan Bandits 11-1 in the semifinals before dispatching the Petoskey Blaze 9-0 in a game called early due to the mercy rule.

Courtney Finkbeiner led the Storm’s offense, batting .705, while Brooke Houle wasn’t far behind at .688, including a game-winning RBI single in pool play. Teammates Taylor Ring at .588 and Senja Liimatta at .538 were significantly over .500. Hannah Johnson was also 2 for 2 before going down with a knee injury.

Liimatta won all three of her games and Laura Ruohonen took two of three on the pitching rubber. Liimatta allowed just one run all weekend on 11 hits and three walks while striking out 16 and compiling a 0.41 ERA.

Next up for the Northern Storm is the Thunderstruck Tournament in Alpena July 12-14.