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Beaubien pitches Monroe St. Mary CC to D3 softball final

Ted Kulfan
The Detroit News

East Lansing — Meghan Beaubien has been thinking about it all season, but especially in the postseason.

The senior pitcher, a three-time player of the year, knows her high school career is ending.

“This whole run, any game could be your last game,” said Beaubien, who Friday extended it one last day by leading Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central past Shepherd 1-0. “I don’t think it’s really hit me, it’s a little weird.

“But I want to go out there and make the last game of my career another state championship.”

St. Mary CC (26-3) advanced to Saturday’s Division 3 state championship, where the school will go after a third consecutive state championship.

BOX SCORE: Monroe St. Mary CC 1, Shepherd 0

Meghan Beaubien leaps into the air after she strikes out the final batter and wins the game as Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central beats Shepherd, 1-0, in its MHSAA semifinal game at MSU on Friday. The final batter was her 15th strikeout for the day.

Beaubien, who has committed to the University of Michigan, pitched a two-hit shutout against Shepherd (25-19) and struck out 15.

Beaubien had to be sharp because Shepherd pitcher Haley Peska was equally efficient, allowing five hits and only walking one, while striking out six.

“They played a great game and almost beat us,” Beaubien said.

For good measure, Beaubien scored the lone run, too, tripling to lead off the sixth and scoring on Kelsey Barron’s double.

“I do like to hit,” said Beaubien, who serves as St. Mary's lead-off hitter. “I love to contribute offensively and I knew I could hit (Friday), I just missed it the two previous at-bats.

“I went up there looking for something to drive and I got ahead in the count and I got it (a pitch to hit).”

Pitching on any level is important, so St. Mary CC coach John Morningstar knows he has an asset.
“She’s our (Justin) Verlander,” Morningstar said. “She’s dominant.”

But Beaubien did need help Friday in the late innings.

In the bottom of the sixth, Shepherd’s Ryanne McKenna singled with one out, was sacrificed to second, then stole third base.

But Beaubien got a strikeout to end the threat.

In the seventh, Beaubien hit a batter, who moved to second on a sacrifice, then moved to third when freshman right fielder Samantha Michael (who also had two hits) made a diving catch for the second out.

“A game-saver,” said Morningstar of Michael’s catch. “If it heels off the glove, the run scores and we’re probably still playing. You have to have that, you have to be able to defend.”

Beaubien struck out the final Shepherd hitter, with the runner on third.

“I don’t like it when people get on base, obviously it happens, but that means I’ve messed up, the hitter beat me,” Beaubien said. “It means I have to do better and that just gets me more motivated and fired up and to go after the next batter.”

DIVISION 3

Napoleon 16, Gladstone 0 (5 innings): Napoleon (36-4) scored eight runs in the first inning and never looked back.

Kallie Pittman had four hits, Ashton Jordan drove in four runs, and Paige Kortz and Hayley Rose both scored three runs. Pitcher Sydney Coe allowed three hits and struck out six in five innings.

DIVISION 4

Ottawa Lake Whiteford 6, Coleman 1: Erin Malney had two hits, drove in four runs, and scored three times, leading Whiteford (33-6).

Whiteford scored three runs in the first inning and never let up, as pitcher Lindsay Walker pitched a three-hitter and struck out nine.

Autumn Tubbs had two hits and scored a run for Coleman (35-6).

Indian River Inland Lakes 9, Kalamazoo Christian 0: Sydney DePauw had three hits and Inland Lakes (34-5) had 14 hits total.

Pitcher Cloe Mallory pitched a four-hit shutout for Inland Lakes, and helped her own cause with two hits and scoring three runs.

ted.kulfan@detroitnews.com

twitter.com/tkulfan

Division 1

Thursday’s semifinals

Grandville 2, Clarkston 1

Macomb Dakota 6, Mattawan 3

Final: Saturday, 12:30 p.m.

Division 2

Thursday’s semifinals

Richmond 4, Escanaba 2

Ida 3, Stevensville Lakeshore 2

Final: Saturday, 10 a.m.

Division 3

Friday’s semifinals

Monroe St. Mary C.C. 1, Shepherd 0

Napoleon 16, Gladstone 0 (5 inn.)

Final: Saturday, 5:30 p.m.

Division 4

Friday’s semifinals

Indian River Inland Lakes 9, Kalamazoo Christian 0

Ottawa Lake Whiteford 6, Coleman 1

Final: Saturday, 3 p.m.