In an article published online by C&G Newspapers, the MHSSCA unveils its rosters for the upcoming all star games to be played July 19 at Margo Jonker Stadium at Central Michigan University. Notre Dame's Micaela (Caley) Gleason and Madison (Maddy) McClune will represent the Irish in the D-2 game.
Softball All-Star games back for 36th year
By Jason Carmel Davis
Posted July 6, 2017 (C&G Newspapers)
“It’s always special because all of the kids are so great,” said Calnen, who coaches at Troy High. “They’re truly the best of the best in the state, and it’s really cool to have all of them in one place.”
The games are in their 36th year. This year’s exhibitions take place July 19 at Margo Jonker Stadium at Central Michigan University. The Division 4 game is set for 9:30 a.m., while the D-1 game is at 11:30 a.m. The D-2 contest is at 1:30 p.m. and the D-3 finale is set for 3:30 p.m. Teams in each game are dubbed “Red” and “White.” School location is not factored into team rosters. Each game, regardless of the score, will go eight innings.
This marks the fourth straight year that the games will be played at CMU. The exhibitions had been played at Michigan State University in previous years.
Calnen will coach in the D-1 game for the fifth time. This particular time, his daughter, Julia Calnen, has been selected to play in the game.
“I can’t begin to say how special that is to me,” said Calnen, who is a member of the MHSSCA Coaches Hall of Fame. “I had to coach this year.”
The games are reserved for seniors only, and any player who earned All-State or Honorable-Mention All-State status is eligible to play. The remainder of the rosters are comprise of players who earned All-Region status during the state playoffs.
An average of 15 players from schools from the C & G Sports coverage area have been selected to play in the games in recent years. Eighteen players from the coverage area — including three from Division 1 state champion Macomb Dakota — have been selected to play in this year’s games. Rosters are subject to change, Calnen said.
Players will arrive in Mount Pleasant July 18, where they will have a meet-and-greet before a practice, and they will get the opportunity to interact the rest of the night.
All-State awards are also handed out the day of the games. The cost to attend the games is $5.
The majority of those selected will play at the collegiate level next season. Calnen said that adds some extra spice to the competition.
“For a handful of kids, they’ll play in front of (CMU coach Margo Jonker) and try to impress her before they go play for her at CMU. It’s really cool that this is a fun way to go out, but it’s not the last game a lot of these girls will play,” Calnen said. “There’s amazing talent playing in these games. On the other side of it, you may have some players who are going to big schools for academics. These games are a cool way to send them out.”
Stars shining bright
When the 2017 Michigan High School Softball Coaches Association All-Star games take place July 19 at Central Michigan University, schools from the C&G Sports coverage area will be well-represented. Following is a listing of local players who have been selected to play. Rosters may change based on player availability.
Katie Kish, Grosse Pointe South; Alex Sobczak, Farmington Hills Mercy; Kara Vitale, Amber Huntley and Shannon Carr, Sterling Heights Stevenson; Kendahl Dunford, Julia Salisbury and Kattie Popko, Macomb Dakota; Megan Larose, Troy Athens; Hannah Bunker, Walled Lake Northern; Julia Calnen and Brittaney Malaga, Troy High; coach Tom Calnen, Troy High; and coach Kerri Brennan, Troy Athens.
Micaela (Caley) Gleason and Madison (Maddy) McClune, Pontiac Notre Dame Prep. Last year, Notre Dame Prep was represented in the All Star game by Hanna Bullard, Katie Swartz and Hannah Antosz.
Emily Kimmel and Paytin Riethmeier, Rochester Hills Lutheran Northwest.
Taylor Slayton, Grosse Pointe Woods University Liggett.
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About Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy
Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy is a private, Catholic, independent, coeducational day school located in Oakland County. The school's upper division enrolls students in grades nine through twelve and has been named one of the nation's best 50 Catholic high schools (Acton Institute) four times since 2005. Notre Dame's middle and lower divisions enroll students in jr. kindergarten through grade eight. All three divisions are International Baccalaureate "World Schools." NDPMA is conducted by the Marist Fathers and Brothers and is accredited by the Independent Schools Association of the Central States and the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement. For more on Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy, visit the school's home page at www.ndpma.org.