10 to Remember: Spring 2015

June 25, 2015

By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor

The close of June officially ends of another school year. And this season’s MHSAA Finals provided another strong finish with a number of memorable moments sure to be recalled for years to come.

Below is one person’s list of the 10 most significant, drawn from the title-earning performances of 129 teams and hundreds of individuals this spring.

10. Rockford Holds On for Third Straight Girls Lacrosse Title

The Rams saw an 8-1 lead dissolve to a one-goal advantage after Bloomfield Hills Marian scored in the 22nd minute of the second half of their Division 1 Final. Rockford goalie Katie Elwell turned away a shot to tie the game with 55 seconds left, and her team won a jumpball deep on its side of the field with 36 seconds to play to hold on to a 10-9 victory – and claim a third straight MHSAA championship. Rockford is one of three programs to win four MHSAA titles during the 11 seasons of tournament sponsorship. Marian is a two-time runner-up.

9. Hartland Baseball Goes 10 Innings to Win First MHSAA Title

Hartland scored in the first inning of the Division 1 Final in pursuit of its first MHSAA championship in the sport – but then didn’t score again until the bottom of the 10th inning. Junior pitcher John Baker threw all 10 innings for the Eagles, allowing only five hits and striking out 11 batters, and he also had two hits and drove in the game’s first run. Portage Northern also was making its first MHSAA Final appearance in baseball.

8. Northville Girls Tennis Joins First-time Champs; Nguyen Joins Elite

The Northville girls tennis team was one of 32 teams over all sports that won their first MHSAA championships during the 2014-15 school year. The Wildcats finished an impressive five points ahead of Midland Dow, winning three doubles and two singles flights. Utica’s Davina Nguyen, meanwhile, finished as one of the most accomplished champions in MHSAA history, becoming only the sixth player to win at least three titles at No. 1 singles. Nguyen also won in Division 1 as a freshman and junior.

7. Cranbrook Kingswood Regains Boys Lacrosse Title on Last-Second Winner

Johnny Wagner scored 177 goals over his three-season varsity career for Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood, but his last had to be the most spectacular. Three days after sending the Cranes to the Final with an overtime game-winning goal, Wagner scored in the Division 2 championship decider with 10.5 seconds to play to give his team the final edge in a 10-9 victory over Okemos. The winner was his fifth goal of the game.

6. Gull Lake Girls Soccer Wins Again on Shootout Success

The only shots to find the net in the Division 2 Final came during an overtime shootout won by Gull Lake to give the Blue Devils a 1-0 victory and their third straight MHSAA championship. That’s not to say the game lacked for excitement, with the teams combining for 37 shots. Gull Lake had also won its Regional Semifinal in a shootout and finished the spring 25-1-1. Fenton was making its first MHSAA Finals appearance in the sport, seeking its first title in any sport since 1993.  

5. Warren Regina Softball Stuns After Slow Start

Teams that open 3-11 usually don’t finish as championship contenders – but those teams don’t have the MHSAA’s winningest coach, Diane Laffey, running the show to go with a strong group of upperclassmen who emerged from a competative Detroit Catholic League Central. Regina won its sixth MHSAA title and first since 2007 by downing favored Caledonia 5-0 in the Division 1 Final. Senior Marissa Tiano struck out nine batters in giving up only two hits after giving up only four hits in a 7-1 Semifinal win over Mattawan.

4. DeWitt Boys Golf Sticks Winning Shots; Carlson Goes All-Time Low

DeWitt senior Geoffry Croley birdied off the flagstick on the No. 18 hole at Forest Akers East to help the Panthers edge Cranbrook Kingswood 594-595 and claim the Lower Peninsula Division 2 title, its first since 2011. His younger brother, freshman Joey, made par on his final hole (No. 16) to also help secure the win. Meanwhile, Hamilton’s Nick Carlson finished his high school career with a second individual title and the all-time low 36-hole score in MHSAA Finals history, a 134, to edge Matt Harmon’s 135 for East Kentwood in 2001.

3. Saline Unbeatable in Claiming First Girls Soccer Title

The Hornets compiled one of the most impressive seasons in MHSAA girls soccer history in making their first Final and then winning it. Saline gave up a mere four goals – tied for third-fewest in MHSAA history – in 25 games and finished with a 22-0-3 record capped by a 4-0 win over Grand Blanc in the Division 1 championship game. The team’s 22 shutouts also rank tied for third in MHSAA girls soccer history. Senior Taylor Mulder set a school record with 43 goals this season with her second of this game.

2. Legend of Beaubien Grows with Monroe St. Mary Softball Title

Meghan Beaubien already was known by those who follow softball statewide – not many sophomores get a chance to commit to the University of Michigan so early. But what she and the Kestrels did in winning the program’s first MHSAA championship was pretty legendary. Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central outscored its postseason opponents by a combined 29-0 over seven games, beating Bronson 2-0 in the Division 3 Final with Beaubien taking a perfect game into the seventh inning and hitting a two-run homer.

1. Fisher, Saline Finish Strong in Boys Track and Field Final

The Lower Peninsula Division 1 Final was filled with notable finishes – including a pair that will be listed in the national record book next month. Saline won its second MHSAA title in the sport and first since 2006, finishing ahead of East Kentwood – champion five of the last six seasons. The Hornets were keyed by a 3,200 relay of Logan Wetzel, Josiah Humphrey, Austin Welch and Kevin Hall that finished in 7:38.97 to rank among the best all-time in U.S. high school history Grand Blanc senior Grant Fisher posted the second-fastest 1,600 time in U.S. high school history, going 4:00.28.; he graduated with five individual MHSAA Finals titles. Grand Rapids Kenowa Hills’ Donavan Brazier also re-set the all-Finals record in the 800, running 1:48.98.

PHOTO: Grant Fisher, far right, set an MHSAA all-Finals record in the 1,600 that also ranks as the second-fastest in U.S. high school history. (Click to see more from RunMichigan.com. Photos by John Brabbs.)

Record-Setting Saving, Historic Scoring Send Grosse Ile to 2018 Boys Soccer Finals

By Geoff Kimmerly
MHSAA.com senior editor

May 17, 2024

Grosse Ile’s Division 3 runner-up season in 2018 included multiple MHSAA team records for defensive and offensive success.

The Red Devils set a record with 21 straight shutouts and 24 total over 29 games, and also finished third all-time scoring 158 goals.

Their 23-game winning streak that season remains tied for seventh-longest as Grosse Ile finished 27-2.

See below for more recent additions to the MHSAA boys soccer record book, and click the heading to see the record book in full.

Boys Soccer

Keeper Ethan DeJager and Grandville Calvin Christian were nearly unbeatable in 2020, finishing 19-1-2 and runner-up in Division 4. They set a record allowing only four goals for the season, while DeJager is fourth on the season shutouts list with 19 over those 22 games and tied for the second-longest shutout streak at 13. DeJager was a senior that season.

Seth Davidson capped his four-year varsity career this past fall on three records lists for shutouts – 15 over 22 games this past season, 26 for his career and nine straight as a senior. Berkley as a team also made the fewest goals allowed list, giving up only 11 in finishing 18-2-2.

Caden Saxton capped a memorable four-year Flint Kearsley varsity career in the fall with four entries in the record book. He made the assists list with 27 over 21 games as a senior and also the single-season points list with 65, and made career lists in those categories with 63 assists and 149 points, respectively, over 71 games.

Jonesville advanced in its District this past season with an 8-5 overtime win over Blissfield on Oct. 12, and Warrick Elder played a big part scoring six goals. He’s a senior.

Kalamazoo Hackett Catholic Prep’s run to the Division 4 Semifinals saw contributions from several players, and junior James Whiting was among those leading the way. He made the assists list with 30 over 22 games, and also the total points list with 49. He also sits on the career assists list after three seasons with 66 and one more season to play.

Holland Christian made the team list for 12 straight shutouts from Sept. 8-Oct. 19, and 15 shutouts total over 20 games this past season. Junior Adam Bergman was in goal for all 15 including the 12 consecutive.

Muskegon Oakridge senior Arturo Romero-Serrano capped his career in the fall with his second season reaching 40 goals, netting 42 total to finish his four-year career with 105 and also on the MHSAA career points list with 125. He also added a second six-goal game, against Muskegon Catholic Central on Aug. 25.

Monroe Jefferson’s season came to an end Oct. 11 in a District game against Riverview, but senior Gabe Gelso finished with a state record. He made 49 saves in the 9-0 defeat as the Bears had only eight players total.

Ian Klenk added eight more shutouts in goal this past fall to finish his three-season varsity career with 25 in 60 games and make the career list in that category. He’ll continue his career at Kuyper College.

PHOTO Grosse Ile's keeper Brendan Ebler (1) gathers the ball and charts his next move during the 2018 Division 3 Final.