By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
WILLIAMSTON – Bloomfield Hills Marian seniors Makenzie Larson, Alexa Finger and Hanna Pateryn were set to give everything they had this season, their last of high school soccer.
But after graduating 13 players from the 2011 team, and then adding six freshmen, the trio had no idea what they were getting themselves into this spring.
Turns out, it was a third MHSAA championship in four seasons.
Thanks in part to two goals by one of those freshmen, midfielder Kelly Sweeney, Marian downed reigning champion Plainwell 3-1 in Saturday’s Division 2 Final.
“Just to come back with all these freshmen; they worked so hard to keep these three seniors around to the very end,” Larson said. “All these underclassmen that stepped up for us, they brought so much energy to the team. They did an amazing job.”
Larson and Finger were on the Mustangs for all three championships, while Pateryn joined for the 2010 win. Total, Marian has won four MHSAA titles, all over the last decade.
The Mustangs (22-2-1) also had two sophomores this season. One, midfielder Julia Griessmann, got her team on the board 7:55 into the game.
The chances kept coming for both teams. Total, Marian outshot Plainwell 13-10, but the Mustangs capitalized with Sweeney’s two goals during the first nine minutes of the second half.
The Trojans (21-3-2) – which returned 15 players from last season’s title-winning team – did get on the board on junior Hope Pell’s goal with just less than 22 minutes to play. But they couldn’t come up with enough opportunities down the stretch to make it closer.
“I love my group,” Plainwell coach Chad Wiseman said. “They battled from the beginning of the season to the end of the season. We had some chances, and in a state title game you’ve probably got to capitalize on those chances.”
Larson has signed to play next season at Loyola University of California. Pateryn has signed to play at Northern Kentucky, while Finger will go to Butler University on an academic scholarship. The multitude of juniors and underclassmen certainly played a large part in this championship, but coach Barry Brodsky said it came down to the leadership of his three seniors coming off last season’s District opener loss.
“We made a point as a coaching staff to really stay on the seniors we have. These are quality kids and they bought in," he said. “If the seniors don’t buy in, you’re not going anywhere. But from the first day until last night at practice, they were all in 100 percent of the time.”
PHOTO: Bloomfield Hills Marian's Mackenzie Pohlman (13) battles for the ball with Plainwell's Makenzie Evers during Saturday's Division 2 Final at Williamston High School.
Be The Referee is a series of short messages designed to help educate people on the rules of different sports, to help them better understand the art of officiating, and to recruit officials.
Below is this week's segment – Soccer Overtime - Listen
Soccer games in the postseason have one big noticeable difference from the regular season. In the postseason, games cannot end in a tie – so games go to overtime and possibly a shootout.
Here’s how that works:
If the game is tied at the end of regulation, it will go to overtime, which is two 10-minute periods played in its entirety. There is no sudden death or golden goal winner. If there is a winner at the end of the 20 minutes, that team wins and advances to the next round. If there’s still a tie, we move to a shootout.
In the shootout, the teams alternate taking five penalty kicks. If it’s still tied after five kicks, they each kick until the tie is broken.
Oct. 17: Tennis Spin - Listen
Oct. 10: Blocked Kick - Listen
Oct. 3: Volleyball Double & Lift - Listen
Sept. 26: Registration Process - Listen
Sept. 20: Animal Interference - Listen
Sept. 13: Feet Rule on Soccer Throw-In - Listen
Sept. 6: Volleyball Jewelry - Listen
Aug. 30: Football Rules Similarities - Listen
Aug. 23: Football Rules Differences - Listen