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June 12, 2013

Mercy softball team bows out of regional in 3-2 loss to Canton

By Mike Moore
C & G Sports Writer

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Mercy softball team bows out of regional in 3-2 loss to Canton
Mercy’s Sam Bauer rounds third after hitting a home run in the district round. The Marlins slammed 51 long balls in 2013, a new state record.

With the bases loaded, nobody out and trailing by a single run in the bottom of the seventh inning, Nancy Malinowski felt pretty good about her team and its chances of moving on.

Which is exactly why losing was so tough.

“I mean, you load the bases with nobody out, and you think you can get one or two in,” the Farmington Hills Mercy softball coach said with a laugh after her team was ousted by Canton High in a 3-2 Division 1 regional semifinal loss June 8 at Novi High. “It just wasn’t meant to be for us.”

Trailing 3-0 entering the final inning, Mercy led the frame off with two singles, a batter hit by a pitch and another walked.

But Canton got the final three hitters in order.

“I’m proud of how we fought back, and we nearly won the game,” Malinowski conceded. “We didn’t get the hits when we needed early, and that was the difference.”

Mercy ended 2013 with a 29-3 record.

The girls won a Catholic League division title, then rolled to the league’s playoff championship before winning a second straight district crown.

The 51 home runs hit by the Marlins also set a new state record, easily passing the mark or 40 hit by Frankfort High (2007) and Detroit Martin Luther King (1996).

“No doubt, this was a great season,” Malinowski said.

And there may be more to come.

The Marlins graduate three seniors — team captains Meghan Tarrance, Jacquelyn Murphy and Elizabeth Carlson — but could bring back as many as 11 next spring.

“We had a lot of fun this season, and with most of the team coming back, we’re excited about the future,” Malinowski said. “Who knows what we’ll have coming into the school, but with some other girls hopefully healthy, the future is a bright one.”

Raiders fall to Northville
North Farmington was also part of the Novi regional, and had its season come to a close in a 6-0 loss to Northville High in a D-1 semifinal.

One week after winning the program’s first district title since 2002, the Raiders finished the 2013 season with a 29-9 overall record.

You can reach C & G Sports Writer Mike Moore at mmoore@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1038. Twitter Follow Mike on Twitter.