Michael Beaudin makes big difference on Fenwick’s defense

SHARE Michael Beaudin makes big difference on Fenwick’s defense
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Fenwick’s boys soccer team had tangible proof that it’s better off when senior defender Michael Beaudin is on the field.

Beaudin exited the Friars’ 3-2 victory over Downers Grove North in the Class 3A Morton Regional semifinal Oct. 21 with 23:01 remaining.

When a Mustangs’ player attempted a pass from near midfield, the ball bounced off the back of Beaudin’s head and knocked him down. He was treated on the field for more than a minute and was able to walk off the field.

He was checked out on the sideline by Morton’s training staff for a possible concussion. They had Beaudin perform jumping jacks and answer a few questions before clearing him to play.

“Definitely it was good to be able to get back in there. I was confident we could win,” said Beaudin, adding that he has only suffered one concussion in his career, when he was sophomore on the JV team.

He returned four minutes later, but over that time each team scored a goal.

With Fenwick’s top defender on the sideline, eighth-seeded Downers North tied the game at 2-2 on Michael Molloy’s low liner across the goal line.

However, Fenwick senior forward Liam Kelleher scored the game-winning goal nearly three minutes later on a breakaway with 19:57 to go.

Once back on the field, Beaudin helped shore up the defense for the 10th-seeded Friars (10-10). Downers North (8-11-1) had only three shots the rest of the game.

“You don’t like it when Michael is not in the game,” Fenwick coach Rob Watson said. “You like it if you can keep him on the field.”

Beaudin, one of four captains for the Friars, was replaced by sophomore John Curran on the defense.

“Obviously, he’s one of our leaders. You see that on the field. Our defense is more settled; there is a sense of calm around him,” Watson said. “He’s a good kid who is the near the top of his class and belongs to the National Honor Society.”

Beaudin, who did not suffer a concussion, played Friday in Fenwick’s 4-0 loss to top-seeded Morton (23-1-2) in the regional final to end the Friars’ season.

The Hinsdale resident has few regrets about the end of his career. The Friars went 5-2 during Catholic League play and were eliminated from the playoffs by one of the favorites to win the state tournament.

“I couldn’t ask for anything better, to be honest,” Beaudin said. “This was definitely a big win, especially here. Lower seeds are usually not supposed to win.”

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