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Pirates, Lady Pirates soccer teams kick off fall season

POLSON — The Polson Pirates are returning nine starters from last season’s conference championship team. With a strong, experienced squad, Head Coach Adam Fansher is hoping to build off of last years’ success.

“They have been working hard all summer,” Fansher said. “They have all grown and gotten stronger, I am impressed with how practices are going so far.”

Fansher is expecting the upperclassmen to take on more responsibilities during the 2016 season.

“This team has potential,” Fansher said. “I am counting on everyone to get better as the season progresses.”

Returning All-State players Michael Mercer and Alex Encizo Ambrosio will be key players for the success of the Pirates, according to Fansher.

Other components to the successful team are All-Conference players Emilio Hernandez, Andrew Hanson, Linde Lambson and Russell Smith.

Fansher is looking forward to game time to see zones the Polson Pirates need to improve on during practices.

“The guys are pretty conditioned with all the work they put in on the off-season, but we still have areas we need to work on,” Fansher said. “This is the hardest working team I have ever coached, this group certainly understands the commitment it takes to be successful.”

The Polson Lady Pirates are in a similar situation with 10 returning players from their 9-4 record last season. Head Coach Michael Hewston is pleased to see early signs of success.

“I have high expectations this year,” Hewston said. “Most of these girls have played together for six to seven years now and know how to play together.”

Returning All-State striker Tiara Duford and returning All-State defender Olivia Hewston will be “a force to reckon with” and strong leaders for the 2016 season.

Other key returning players are All-Conference juniors Marina Mayorga and JaNessa Taylor as well as sophomore Ashlee Howell.

Hewston said the beginning of the season is going great and the team is focusing on having “possession with a purpose.”

“We want to have confidence every time we touch the ball,” Hewston said. “Along with that, we are really getting our conditioning under control.”

Last year Lady Pirates ended their season with 36 goals and 28 assists and will continue to work on technical skills throughout the season.

“We should be pretty explosive with our attacking,” Hewston said. “We have been working on the speed of our shots and passes.”

With a strong returning group, Hewston is excited for the upcoming games.

“It is a great group of girls,” Hewston said. “I think it will be a great year for us.”

The Polson Pirates and Lady Pirates will travel to Loyola on Thursday, Sept. 1, for their second game of the season.

The girls game will start at 4 p.m. and boys will follow at 6 p.m.

Polson Pirates and Lady Pirates Soccer Schedule

Date Opponent Location Time

Thu. Sept. 1 Loyola Loyola 4 p.m. G/6 p.m. B

Sat. Sept. 3 Frenchtown Polson 12 p.m. B/2 p.m. G

Fri. Sept. 9 Billings Central Billings 3 p.m. G/5 p.m. B

Sat. Sept. 10 Laurel Laurel 10 p.m. G/12 p.m. B

Thu. Sept. 15 Libby Polson 3 p.m. B/5 p.m. G

Sat. Sept. 17 Columbia Falls CFalls 12 p.m. B/2 p.m. G

Tue. Sept. 20 Bigfork Bigfork 3 p.m. B/5 p.m. G

Thu. Sept. 22 Hamilton (JV) Hamilton 4 p.m. G/6 p.m. B

Sat. Sept. 24 Whitefish Whitefish 5 p.m. G/7 p.m. B

Thu. Sept. 29 Bigfork Polson 5 p.m. G/7 p.m. B

Sat. Oct. 1 Columbia Falls Polson 11 p.m. G/1 p.m. B

Tue. Oct. 4 Whitefish Polson 5 p.m. B/7 p.m. G

Thu. Oct. 6 Libby Libby 3 p.m. G/5 p.m. B

Sat. Oct. 15 Play-Offs TBA TBA

Sat. Oct. 22 Play-Offs TBA TBA

Sat. Oct. 29 State Championship TBA TBA

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