Fiona Crane does heavy lifting for Mother McAuley with stolen bases but longs for a home run: ‘It has to come soon.’ Plus, softball notes.

0
8

Senior shortstop Fiona Crane has a couple of boxes she wants to check before ending her career at Mother McAuley.

She wants to lead the Mighty Macs to their first regional title since 2015.

She also wants to hit a home run over a fence. That would actually be a lifetime achievement.

“It’s getting closer and closer,” Crane said, laughing. “In the Loyola game, I hit three triples, so it has to come soon.”

Crane hasn’t needed to hit home runs to be a leader.

The Northern Illinois recruit is batting .464 out of the leadoff spot for McAuley (8-7). She has 14 RBIs and a whopping 24 steals.

Crane did circle the bases during a game against Montini when she drew a walk on a passed ball and kept on running.

“They just kept making errors,” Crane said. “When I went back to the dugout after I scored, coach (Caitlyn Migawa) was like, ‘Oh, God. Fiona.’

“I always look at the fielders to see if they’re paying attention. If they’re not, I’m going. I’ll take the extra base, even if I’m barely safe. I’m not going to stop running until they make me.”

Mother McAuley’s Fiona Crane is ready for the play at shortstop against Marist during a nonconference game on Monday, April 11, 2022. (Vincent D. Johnson / Daily Southtown)

Crane has been a leadoff hitter for the Mighty Macs since her first game on the varsity as a freshman. In her debut, she went 4-for-4 against De La Salle.

“It was crazy,” Crane said. “I was very happy with that. When I came up to the varsity I felt, not really a pushover, but I was kind of nervous.

“I had thoughts like, ‘Am I good enough to play with them? If I do too well as a freshman, are they going to be annoyed with me?’ I felt I had something to prove.”

With no sophomore season due to the pandemic, Crane stepped into the leadership role as a junior. She batted .524 with 32 stolen bases.

To say the least, she was proven.

“Fiona has made a big impact on the program,” Migawa said. “We’ve made a lot of progress during the past four or five years. A lot of that has to do with her being the kid she is and what she brings to the team.

“She always sparks the team flying around the bases. She’s our fearless leader. Fiona is everything we need her to be and more.”

St. Laurence’s Angelina Seropian connects on a pitch against Lincoln-Way East during a nonconference game on Thursday, March 17, 2022. (Vincent D. Johnson / Daily Southtown)

Iron girl: St. Laurence senior Angelina Seropian had another big day at the plate Saturday with three hits and a .500 on-base percentage during a doubleheader sweep over Resurrection.

Behind the plate, she also saved Vikings coach Teagan Walsh another trip or two to the circle.

Seropian doesn’t just catch her pitchers, she guides them.

“Before I can even say something to a pitcher, she’s already saying it,” Walsh said. “She just soaks everything up and knows exactly what she needs to tell them to correct a pitch.”

The Bucknell recruit has been an iron girl for this season for St. Laurence (12-9). She has handled all of the catching duties while senior Fiona Sjostrom is recovering from an injury.

“‘Ange’ has been doing a great job,” Walsh said. “She has really just grown so much over the last four years. This has been probably been her best, most consistent season.”

Seropian is batting .395 with 18 RBIs. She has a .494 on-base percentage.

On defense, she has thrown out three would-be stealers.

There haven’t been many challengers.

Daily Southtown

Daily Southtown

Twice-weekly

News updates from the south suburbs delivered every Monday and Wednesday

“‘Ange’ frames really well and she’s a wall back there,” Walsh said. “She takes the relationships with the pitchers very seriously. She keeps up positive reinforcement but also makes them work.

“Pitching can be the toughest position out there. You’ve got the ball every single pitch, and when there are corrections to be made, she’s honest with them. When it comes from her mouth, they buy in because they know how hard she’s working.”

Strikes galore: The hitters had their eventual say, but the two aces drew a ton of swings and misses April 27 when Shepard defeated Lemont 5-2.

Shepard senior Kelly Greene struck out 14, while Lemont senior Sage Mardjetko struck out 15. Greene, the Astros’ all-time strikeout leader, has 107 in 58 innings this season.

“It was the Kelly versus Sage show,” Astros coach Kelsey Clifford said. “I knew it was going to be like that. It was awesome.”

Greene and Sarah Kreamalmeyer were the offensive heroes for Shepard with two hits apiece.

“Oh, it was cold, a tough game with the elements,” Clifford said. “We were able to take advantage of the little things, the opportunities that came our way.”

Read More

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here