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Lady Pirates finding their place in the Northwestern A universe

 

POLSON – Softball is tough with a young pitching staff, but that hasn’t stopped Polson’s Lady Pirates from making their mark on the diamond during the 2015 season.

After more than a few seasons on top of their game, the Lady Pirates have faced the hard struggles of fresh players on the field, working to finding their spot in a hard-hitting conference. But that doesn’t stop veteran head coach Larry Smith from believing in his hardworking athletes to make some noise in the Northwestern A conference.

“You know, we’ve had our ups and downs,” Smith said. “We’ve had our highs and lows. The key is our inexperienced pitchers, but they’re coming along good.”

With Columbia Falls leading the conference ladder, Smith said a win against the Wildkats might be the stuff the Lady Pirates could tap into to go the distance — a win they accomplished Thursday.

“If we can beat them (Columbia Falls) then we’re sitting pretty good as far as the conference goes,” Smith said before the match.

On Thursday, the Lady Pirates overcame the stress of beating the No. 1 Columbia Falls squad with a 6-5 nailbiter.

After a one-run deficit in the first, Lady Pirate Sarah Rausch set the stage with a three-run home run to come back for the lead. Though the Wildkats scored four more in the fourth and fifth, it wasn’t enough to overcome the Lady Pirate’s early lead, ending in Polson’s 6-5 win.

With Rausch’s home run, the Lady Pirates put up nine hits to win the contest, including Jaiden Toth and Kaelen Wall’s 2-4 effort.

Sophomore Camas Renault scored the win from the circle.

With five seniors on the roster, the Lady Pirates have some experience under their belt, and leading the way is Taylor Brackey.

Brackey boasts a top-tier batting average of .623, with 17 RBIs on the season.

“(Brackey’s) been very consistent for us, and steady,” Smith said. “She’s been kind of the glue of the team. Kaelen Wall has also been hitting the ball very well.”

On Friday the Lady Pirates headed to Butte to compete at the Laverne Combo Tournament.

In game one against Billings Central, the Lady Pirates rallied past a three-inning deficit to score five in the fourth for the 5-4 win.

Haley Fyant picked up the win from the circle, while Wall went 1-3 at the plate with a home run and a pair of RBIs.

In game two against Park, a two-run homer by Wall and a four-RBI effort on Toth’s part put the Lady Pirates on top 10-0 in the shutout.

Both Wall and Toth went 3-4 in the outing, with Toth putting up four runs batted in.

On Saturday the Lady Pirates put on yet another pounding as they took down Sidney 20-0.

Skyla Krantz and Wall led the way at the dish, with Krantz posting a 4-4 performance and Wall going 3-3, both adding to the score with Krantz batting in three and Wall chipping in four. The pitching team of Renault and Fyant gained the shutout with Renault picking up the win.

Wall and Hannah Potter both went long with home runs.

Against Havre, the Lady Pirates continued their domination with a 10-3 victory.

Hannah Potter and Kaelyn Smith were 2-4 at the plate with a pair of RBIs, while Brackey went 3-4.

The upcoming postseason may be a dog fight for Polson as Columbia Falls and Frenchtown will be battling for a State spot. But Smith is ready for the battle.

“Frenchtown was the heavy favorite as they expected to walk right through our conference undefeated, but in the same week Libby beat them and then we beat (Frenchtown),” Smith said. “It kind of throws everybody right at the top, so we’re all vying for those three positions. These are probably the four better teams throughout the state.”

All in all, Smith said, “It’s been a season of emotions up and down, and hopefully we can get that confidence and that real passion of Lady Pirate softball and get back to that mental state that we are very strong.”

Lady Pirate softball will continue its mission in a pair of home games against Whitefish on Thursday and Libby on Friday before heading to State May 21-23. 

 

Results

Polson 5 0 1 0 0 0 – 5 9 3  

Columbia Falls 1 0 0 0 2 2 0 – 5 6 4 

Jaiden Toth 2-4, Kaelen Wall 2-4, Taylor Brackey 1-4, Hannah Potter 1-4, Sarah Rausch 1-4, Lydia Dupuis 0-4, Kaelyn Smith 2-4, Skyla Krantz 0-2, Hannah Fryberger 0-1, Camas Renault 0-2, Haley Fyant 0-2, Laurel Bitterman 0-0

2B – Brackey, Potter. HR – Rausch. RBIs – Rausch (3), Brackey, Smith, Krantz.

Polson 0 0 0 5 0 – 5 8 2 

Billings Central 3 0 1 0 0 – 4 5 2

Jaiden Toth 1-3, Karlen Wall 1-3, Taylor Brackey 0-3, Sarah Rausch 1-2, Kaelen Smith 1-3, Olivia Dupuis 1-2, Hannah Fryberger 1-2, Skyla Krantz 1-2, Camas Renault 0-0, Hayley Fyant 1-2, Laurel Bitterman 0-0

2B – Rausch. HR- Smith. RBIs –Wall (2), Smith, Dupuis, Fyant.

Polson 0 3 0 1 6 – 10 9 1

Park 0 0 0 0 0 – 0 3 5

Jaiden Toth 3-4, Kaelen Wall 3-4, Talyor Brackey 0-4, Sarah Rausch 0-3, Kaelen Smith 1-3, Olivia Dupuis 2-3, Camas Reanualt 0-1, Laurel Bitterman 0-0, Quinn Motitchka 0-0, Hannah Potter 0-1, Skyla Krantz 1-3, Haley Fyant 0-2 

2B – Wall, Smith, Dupuis. HR – Wall. RBIs – Toth (4), Dupuis, Wall (2), Dupuis.

Polson 4 11 2 3 – 20 22 0

Sydney 0 0 0 0 – 0 1 2 

Jaiden Toth 1-3, Kaelen Wall 3-3 , Taylor Brackey 1-3, Hannah Potter 3-4, Sarah Rausch 2-3, Kaelyn Smith 2-2, Lydia Dupuis 3-4, Skyla Krantz 4-4, Haley Fyant 2-3, Quinn Motichka 0-1, Ashley Benson 0-1, Hannah Fryberger 1-1, Laural Bitterman 0-0, Camas Renault 0-1

2B – Brackey, Potter, Fryberger, Krantz. HR- Wall, Potter.  RBIs – Wall (4), Potter (3), Krantz (3), Smith (2), Fyant (2), Toth, Fryberger

Polson 0 2 1 5 1 1 – 10 15 1

Havre 0 0 0 1 0 2 – 3 5 4 

2B – Brackey, Fryberger, Potter, Krantz.  HR – Wall, Potter. RBIs – Wall (4), Potter (3), Krantz (3), Smith (2), Fyant (2), Toth.

Polson 0 2 1 5 1 1 – 10 15 1

Havre  0 0 0 1 0 2 – 3 5 4

Jaiden Toth 2-4, Kealen Wall 0-4, Taylor Brackey 3-2, Hannah Potter 2-4, Sarah Rausch 1-3, Kaelen Smith 2-4, Lydia Dupois 2-3, Skyla Krantz 1-2, Camas Renault 0-2, Haley Fyant 0-1, Hannah Fryberger 0-1, Kylie Bitterman 1-2, Ashley Benson 0-1, Quinn Motichka 1-1

2B (Smith (2). RBIs – Potter (2), Smith (2), Toth, Wall, Rausch, Motichka, Krantz

 

 

 

 

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