Skip To Main Content
Marian Spring Teams Enter the Final stretch of "Championship Season"

BLOOMFIELD HILLS - In what has been a banner spring season for Marian High School athletics, five varsity teams will compete this week in MHSAA tournaments.

TENNIS (5-4-4): Head Coach Olivia Underwood has the Mustangs playing their best tennis of the season at the right time. The Mustangs will return to MHSAA Division 3 state finals this weekend, competing in the Kalamazoo area at both Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo College. Sophomore Lily Low earned a six-seed in #1 singles while freshman Caroline Torok is seeded fourth in the second flight singles bracket. Meanwhile, in the third flight, another Marian freshman Allegra Curis, received a first-round bye as a #5-seed and sophomore teammate Anya Nix will also get a bye in the first round of play as the #3-seeded player in the #4-singles bracket.

On the doubles side, the team of Rafi Saba '24 and Kinsley Lowman '24 received a first round bye after earning a #4-seed in the #1-singles tournament. Alex Freitag '25 and Emerson Turkot '26 will play the #2-doubles team from Otsego in the second round of play. In the third-doubles flight, the team of Audrey Agbay '25 and Yana Higgins '27 grabbed a #2-seed. Likewise, Lauren Higdon '24 and Stella Glorio '27 also earned a prestigious #2-seed in the 4th-doubles flight.

"We still have a young team headed to states this year," head coach Olivia Underwood stated recently. "The girls are coming together at the right time and we hope to make some noise in the tournament this weekend."

SOFTBALL (17-16): "Small in number, but big in heart" pretty easily sums up the resurgence of the Mustangs softball squad in 2024 under the direction of first-year head coach Abbey Maresh. Marian finished off the regular season with a 17-16 overall record, eclipsing the .500 mark for the first time in recent memory. Although Marian only has one senior, she's a standout. Avery Schneider has been key to the team's success on the field and in the dugout. Recently named the Marian "Be Awesome" Award winner in honor of late athletic director Dave Feldman, Schneider competes for Marian in hockey and brings that mentality to the diamond, batting .300 with 26 hits and 27 RBI in only 29 games played.

Meanwhile, freshman newcomers like Ruby Hanna, Chadsity Manning and Ava Hierlihy have added a spark to the Mustangs lineup. Power-hitter Hanna leads the Mustangs with two home runs and eight HBP on the season while Manning is one of the team's top performers at the plate as well, sporting a .317 average and .349 slugging percentage and 20 stolen bases. Hierlihy has proven to be one of the top catchers in the Catholic League in her high school debut. Not only is she a stellar defensive backstop with a .957 fielding percentage, she has played all 33 games for Marian and leads the team in at-bats (98), batting average (.520), on-base percentage (.612), OPS (1.336), hits (51), doubles (15), runs (47 - tied with Gracie Griffis) and stolen bases (35).

Junior star Georgia Zilka has carried the pitching load for Marian through a brutal Catholic League AA Division schedule. Not only is Zilka one of the best offensive threats for Marian, playing in all 33 games and carrying a .386 batting average and drawing a team-leading 32 walks, she has been lights-out in the circle. In 21 games, Zilka has racked up 188 strikeouts and has recorded a 3.14 earned run average with a paltry 1.52 WHIP. Opposing hitters this season are only batting .200 against her.

Upon reflection of the regular season success, Coach Maresh said "The future is bright for us, but we're not done yet." In fact, championship season begins Saturday with the MHSAA District tournament held at Detroit Country Day against the host Yellowjackets at Noon. Marian opened the season against DCD in a highly competitive scrimmage and hopes to advance to the District Championship at 2:00 p.m. to face the winner of the St. Mary's Prep/Notre Dame Prep matchup.

SOCCER (11-3-3): After a pair of blowout wins to start the MHSAA Tournament, Marian finds themselves in a grudge match with Cranbrook for a District title this afternoon at Avondale High School. On May 23, Marian opened championship-season play as the number one-seeded team in the district tournament and faced Detroit Renaissance, winning 16-0 at Feldman Field in a goal-rule shortened contest. The Mustangs then traveled to Avondale High School this past Tuesday to face the host-Yellowjackets in the tournament semifinal. Marian again cruised to an 8-0 win that was ended just minutes into the second half.

Both members of the Catholic League Central Division, Marian topped Cranbrook, 1-0 early in the season on their way to a divisional title. Cranbrook then stunned a short-handed Marian team, 4-3 in the CHSL Bishop Tournament before falling to Mercy in the finals. In the other district semifinal, Cranbrook avenged their CHSL loss with a 1-0 shootout victory over Mercy for the right to play Marian in the district final today at 4:00 p.m. at Avondale. The winner will advance to the MHSAA Division 2 regional tournament hosted by Divine Child.

Marian has been led this season by a stingy defense that didn't allow a goal through the first six games of the season, the team has only surrendered seven goals total through 17 games. Senior all-Catholic keeper Dani Mertz has 55 saves on the season so far. Offensively, Marian has been paced by sophomores Clair Dauer (13 goals, two assists) and Giulianna Agrusso (10 goals, three assists). Freshman Nia Bordogna has tallied five goals of her own and leads the team with nine assists.

"While we haven't been sufficiently tested in the state tournament yet, we've had the opportunity to extend playing opportunities to underclassmen that will have to play a large role for us moving forward," first-year head coach Danny Price said. "We've had great training sessions recently and we constantly talk about playing to our standard."

LACROSSE (13-4): Like the soccer program, Marian lacrosse was also ranked #1 in Michigan after a 7-0 start to the season. While still a top-10 program in the MHSAA Division 2, Head Coach Lou Conroy knows that if you want to be the best at the end of the season, you have to beat the best.

With a pair of narrow losses to rival Mercy - once in the regular season and again in the Catholic League Bishop Championship, Marian also sputtered against perennial power Detroit Country Day and finished the season with an uncharacteristic performance at Division 1 Lake Orion to end the regular season. Now, after many players battled illness, the team has bounced back with a 21-10 MHSAA regional first round victory over Sacred Heart last Friday and a 22-2 drubbing of Notre Dame Prep in the regional semifinal round. The Mustangs will return to Notre Dame Prep for a rematch with Detroit Country Day in the regional championship Friday at 5:30 p.m. for a chance at a MHSAA Division 2 semifinal berth on the line.

Leading the team in goals this season are freshman Caroline Quaine (52) and senior sister Charlotte (36). Sophomore Grace Dery (31 goals), Junior Jaclyn Waechter (27 goals) and Freshman Meghan McMichael (21 goals) are close behind the leaders as well. Senior standout Ava Dietz has an impressive 26 goals on the season and is off the the team lead with 14 assists to Charlotte Quaine's 15. Dery (12 assists) and McMichael (11 assists) round out the team's top-three assist leaders. Dery leads Marian with 65 ground balls while Jaclyn Waechter has been the top draw control leader for Marian (110). Junior newcomer in goal, Heidi Carroll has been outstanding for Marian in the cage with a save percentage above .400 and 55 saves on the season.

TRACK & FIELD: Co-head coaches Chris Vanneste and Alan Ganshorn have had a busy spring. For several years, the MHSAA Regional was hosted by a participating school that could only host on dates that conflicted with the Marian commencement ceremony, thus depriving many Mustangs senior athletes the opportunity to qualify for MHSAA Finals. This year, the coaching staff took it on themselves to apply to host the meet without a home track. Graciously, the MHSAA and Oakland University head track & field coach Paul Rice stepped up and supported Marian in hosting at the Elaine Leigh track complex at Oakland University. Not only did Marian and all the track & field families run a great meet, several Mustangs were able to qualify for MHSAA Finals AND participate in commencement activities.

Senior Scarlett Bouschet earned a regional championship with a high jump of 4'10" and a spot in MHSAA Finals at Hamilton High School this Saturday, June 1. Joining her will be Junior Abby Walton, competing in the 800 meter run. Senior Molly O'Brien also ran an inspirational race in the 3200 meter run at regionals and will compete at states. Senior Sarah Gundlach, who earlier this season recorded a new Marian record in the discus with a throw of 112'1", was regional runner-up and will compete for a state title as well.

As a preview to the state meet, Oxford High School was the site of the highly competitive Oakland County Championships this week. For the second straight year, Bouschet earned all-county honors in the high jump, matching her personal best with a jump of 5'1" on her way to a third-place finish. Gundlach also finished in the Oakland County top-ten in discus with three throws exceeding 100'.

"This season has been the fastest moving season we have experienced during our journey at Marian," Coach Vanneste recently expressed to the team. "This group has been the easiest group to coach, the most supportive during training and at races, the best communicators and all around quality student athletes."

Best of luck to our spring varsity teams competing this week! For results and highlights follow us on X (@marianathletics), or at www.marianmustangs.com.

  • Athletics