Meghan Beaubien strikes out 16, St. Mary C.C. wins third straight title, 13-1 over NapoleonSoftball  |
East Lansing – Meghan Beaubien was at her best again on Saturday.
That, in and of itself, is not unusual.
What was different was that this was her last high school game. And that’s the good news for the other teams in Division 3.
Beaubien allowed two hits, one walk and she struck out 16 to lead Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central to a 13-1 victory over Napoleon in the Division 3 final at Michigan State.
St. Mary C.C. (27-3) won its third consecutive title becoming only the fifth team in state history to accomplish this feat.
There was another unusual occurrence. After recording shutouts in her two previous state final games, Beaubien gave up a run, an unearned run, but a run nonetheless.
It was Beaubien who got things going offensively for the Kestrels. Her two-run triple in the third gave St. Mary C.C. a 2-0 lead. Grace Mikesell had a two-run double in the six-run third and that outburst put Beaubien and Co. in the driver’s seat.
“It’s kind of surreal,” Beaubien said. “When we came in this program, Grace and I started playing and building something. To leave this legacy, three state titles, is amazing.
“I was shooting for a shutout. We had that six-run lead and I just brushed it off.”
It’s been a remarkable career for Beaubien. Many have said she’s one of the best to come out of this state. Certainly she’s one of the best in the last 10 years.
She was 22-1 last season and that included a perfect game in the state final.
She was 23-1 this season and had a career-high 338 strikeouts.
Coach John Morningstar said Beaubien has been a coach’s dream throughout her career.
“It’s the love of the game she has,” he said. “The game loves you as much as you put into it. It’s her durability, her ability to compete at the highest level.”
Napoleon did threaten in the first inning as the Pirates had two base runners with just one out. Beaubien struck out the next two batters to end the inning.
“That was a good inning for us,” Napoleon coach Doug Richardson said. “If we could have pushed a couple of runs across it might have been different.”
Napoleon (36-5) didn’t play well in the field as the Pirates committed seven errors.
There was a damper on the Kestrels’ title. Junior catcher Kenna Garst suffered what is believed to be a high ankle sprain on a play at the plate in the third inning. Garst stayed in the game for another batter but on a play at the plate Dylan Wiley of Napoleon collided with Garst. Wiley scored and Garst reinjured her left ankle. This time she was removed and replaced by Brook Angerer.
“It felt weird,” Garst said. “I heard it when it happened. My teammates had my back.”
Garst had been Beaubien’s catcher every game for the past two seasons.
Offensively, Beaubien, Mikesell, Kelsey Barron and Dani Michael all had two RBI.
“Some coaches spend years trying to get here,” Morningstar said. “To win three is unreal.”