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Beal City comeback attempt thwarted in D4 regional final loss to third-ranked MCC WITH GALLERY

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Back in November of 2009, the Beal City football team played a classic state semifinal game against Muskegon Catholic Central.

The Aggies used a stout defensive approach to hold the Crusaders to one touchdown in a contest that featured a total of 21 points. Six days later, Beal City became state champs.

This does not really serve much relevance to Saturday, June 10, 2017, other than the fact that the two schools met in an entirely different sport for a Division 4 regional championship game hosted by Beal City.

It also featured a football-like score as the Aggies were not able to rally after falling into a steep deficit, dropping a 14-12 decision to third-ranked MCC that featured a boatload more scoring than the memorable football game eight years ago.

“When you give it away early it's tough to get it back at the end,” Beal City coach Steve Pickens said. “The pitching for Muskegon Catholic was not dominant, but we walked way too many batters and gave up some hits in between. It was going to be extremely tough with pitching like that.”

Beal City (26-10) advanced to the regional final via a 13-3 six-inning win over Brethren in the semifinals, the third straight lopsided win for the Aggies to begin the postseason.

But it all came crashing down against the Crusaders, who turned a 2-1 deficit in the second inning into an eventual 12-3 lead.

Beal City began chipping away, using a five-run fourth to make it a 12-8 game. Muskegon Catholic Central pushed it back to a 14-9 game through five, yet two more Aggies runs came across in the sixth.

In the seventh, Beal City scored one run on a Ryan Schafer RBI single and eventually loaded the bases with two outs after the Crusaders chose to intentionally walk Brett Upton.

But the Aggies rally would end there as a groundout ended what would have been a remarkable comeback.

“The competition starts to get better as the postseason goes on and that's what we trained for all year,” Pickens added. “We prepared against upper division teams. Not to take anything away from Muskegon, but we were prepared for it and just couldn't get there.”

Upton led the way in the semifinal, notching four hits including a home run and a double. Thomas McCann had two hits and was hit by two pitches, scoring three runs. Kollin Sharrar recorded two hits and two runs. Ryan Schafer earned the win.

In the title game, Upton hit another home run and was hit by a pitch to go with the intentional walk. He also took the loss on the mound. Ryan Schafer had two hits and scored two runs, while Landon Schafer contributed two hits and three runs.

Last Updated: 6/10/2017 10:42:43 PM EST