Did you see that? (9/17-9/23)

September 25, 2012

The crowning of a new MHSAA soccer scoring champion and some statewide showdowns in golf and volleyball headline the best of the week that was Sept. 17-23. 

Soccer

Chatfield fills it up: Senior Aaron Chatfield, a forward for Burt Lake Northern Michigan Christian, scored both of his team's goals in a 7-2 loss Friday to Elk Lake, but in doing so set the MHSAA career scoring record. He now has 174 goals, two more than former record holder Soony Saad of Dearborn. (Petoskey News)

Golf

Cougars edge Bulldogs: Two-time reigning MHSAA Division 4 champion Lansing Catholic edged Brighton 327-336 at the East Lansing Invitational on Sept. 17 at Walnut Hills Country Club. There were nine ranked teams in the 17-team field. Brighton is ranked No. 2 in Division 1. Lansing Catholic's Jacqueline Setas shot a 70 to take the individual medalist honor, and two of her teammates tied for second. 

Volleyball

Blue streak: Richland Gull Lake downed Portage Central in three sets to win the Portage Central Invitational's gold division and a tournament the featured four teams ranked in Class A plus reigning champion Rockford and reigning Class B champion Fruitport (in A this season). Gull Lake moved up to No. 2 in Class A from No. 4 after the weekend, and Portage Central is No. 6. (Kalamazoo Gazette)

Tennis

Ludington on the move: The Orioles have moved up from No. 8 to No. 6 in the Division 4 rankings after downing formerly-No. 2 Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett and No. 10 Almont at Saturday's Almont Invitational. (Mlive.com)

Cross Country

Flivver flies on: Kingsford's Dan Kulas claimed the individual championship at the Stephenson Invitational on Saturday in 16:58. He's won four straight races. (Iron Mountain Daily News)

Basketball

Pershing coach steps down: Detroit Pershing boys basketball coach A.W. Canada has resigned, but will remain with the program as an assistant. The Doughboys are regularly in contention in Class A, last winning the MHSAA title in 2009 after also making the Final in 2008. (Detroit News)

Story of the Week

Spring Lake setter lifts Lakers: It's been a little more than a year since Emily Blahnik's mother Brenda suffered a horrific fall that left her with a skull fracture, brain trauma and spinal cord injuries. But with her teammates and community in continuous support, Blahnik has remained a big part of Spring Lake's volleyball program. The Grand Haven Tribune has been covering this story throughout, and Nate Thompson provides us with this update. (Grand Haven Tribune)

Unionville-Sebewaing Softball Ties Finals Record with 5th-Straight Championship

By Tom Kendra
Special for MHSAA.com

June 15, 2024

EAST LANSING – Leave it to standout senior catcher Gabby Crumm to ensure her school’s spot in the state record books.

Unionville-Sebewaing was doing its thing in Saturday’s Division 4 championship game, slowing pulling away from first-time finalist Holton – until Crumm stepped up to the plate in the fourth inning.

Crumm launched one of her signature shots over the centerfield wall, a two-run homer that keyed a six-run inning for the Patriots, who then cruised to an 11-1 victory in six innings at Secchia Stadium.

It was USA’s fifth straight Finals championship, dating back to pre-COVID in 2019, and tying the record for consecutive titles with Kalamazoo Christian, which won five Division 3 titles in a row from 1996 to 2000.

Emma Monette (9) drives a pitch for the Red Devils. “It’s really bittersweet right now,” said Crumm, a four-year starter at catcher who will play at Saginaw Valley State. “USA softball has meant everything to me, and it’s shaped me in so many different ways.

“I’m sad that it’s over, but it couldn’t have ended in a better way.”

USA, which finished 31-11 and was the top-ranked team in Division 4 entering the postseason, showed its experience in the first inning – getting girls on base and putting the pressure on Holton using two hits and two errors to jump out to a 3-0 lead.

The lead would stay that way until the fourth inning, when USA’s tremendous senior class stepped up and put the game away.

Shortstop Ella Neumann ripped a two-run single, which led the Red Devils to change pitchers. Crumm followed up right after Neumann with her long blast over the centerfield wall to effectively put the game out of reach.

“We struggled a little bit in the beginning, but then we cleaned it up,” said 10th-year Holton coach Kirk Younts, whose team did not have an error after the first inning. “They are a great team, and they know how to hit. We tried to mix up our pitching on them, but it just didn’t work.”

Holton (29-13-1), which was playing in its first softball championship game and looking to win the first softball Finals title for a Muskegon County school, managed just three hits against Patriots sophomore Olivia Greene.

Erin Jubar (6) rounds third base while Holton’s infielders await a throw.Greene fooled the Red Devils all game with her rise ball, striking out 10.

Greene also showed her skills at the plate, ending the game with a shot to right-centerfield which actually hit the top of the fence and bounced back into play. Even though it wasn’t a home run, it scored senior Jenna Gremel to give the Patriots a 10-run lead and clinch the title.

Gremel, who with Crumm was a four-year varsity player and four-time champion, finished with two RBIs. Senior leadoff hitter Rylie Benson was 2-for-3, and Neumann had two hits and two RBIs.

USA coach Marc Reinhardt, who finished his second season as head coach but has been around the program for many years, said it never gets old winning a state championship.

“No, it’s always a thrill,” said Reinhardt, who is assisted by Matt Prime, Tommy Betson and Bree Gordon. “I am so glad that this particular group of seniors was able to go out on top. There will be other talented players coming in, but this was a very special group.”

Click for the full box score.

PHOTOS (Top) USA teammates welcome Gabriella Crumm (1) after her home run Saturday at Secchia Stadium. (Middle) Emma Monette (9) drives a pitch for the Red Devils. (Below) Erin Jubar (6) rounds third base while Holton’s infielders await a throw.