Baseball

Gaylord St. Mary Rolls Into D4 Semifinals

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GAYLORD – Despite the graduation of a large senior class, the Gaylord St. Mary baseball team and its offense that has scored 45 runs this postseason, is back in the MHSAA Division 4 state semifinals for a second straight year.

Class D state runners-up in 1988 and 1989, St. Mary is looking to become the first area program to win a Division 4 state championship since Beal City won back-to-back titles in 2009 and 2010.

Winners of the Ski Valley Conference, the 10th-ranked Snowbirds (29-7) will face an unranked Hudson (26-16) team on Friday that has never appeared in a state final. The Tigers posted a 3-2 win over No. 8 St. Joseph Lake Michigan Catholic in Tuesday’s quarterfinal and have recorded their highest win total since going 30-11 in 2011. The 26 wins is also more than double last year’s win total.

"We talked about it at the beginning of the year, and said 'Hey, well you know, of course we want to go back to East Lansing.'  Well, it's something that's out there that you think yeah that would be nice, and here we are,” St. Mary coach Matt Nowicki said. “Just keep grinding and keep fighting, and I don't know. It's almost overwhelming to even think about, that we're going back down there.  So, good for these boys. Great for these boys."

The Snowbirds have reached the state’s biggest stage with wins over Ellsworth (9-0), East Jordan (10-3), Alcona (5-2), No. 9 Glen Lake (13-10) and Rudyard (8-3).

The winner of Friday’s semifinal will face either No. 2 Portland St. Patrick (32-3-1) or No. 6 Unionville-Sebewaing (30-7-1) Saturday afternoon for the state title.

First pitch in the semifinal is set for 5 p.m. 

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