Buiding Lady Pirates’ softball program is a year-round process

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    The 12U Purple Wave won the Silver division of the USA Tormaschy Memorial softball tournament in Selah, Washington last weekend. (Back Row, from left): Alyssa Orien, Sierra Perez, Olivia Jore, Kailey Smith, Catherine Buckskin, and Fayrene Pierre. (Front Row, from left): Jaja Nichols, Jelayna Tenas, Emma Smith, Izzy Fyant, Summer Newman, and Samantha Rensvold. (photo courtesy of Bob Gunderson)

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    The 12U Purple Wave won the Silver division of the USA Tormaschy Memorial softball tournament in Selah, Washington last weekend. (Back Row, from left): Alyssa Orien, Sierra Perez, Olivia Jore, Kailey Smith, Catherine Buckskin, and Fayrene Pierre. (Front Row, from left): Jaja Nichols, Jelayna Tenas, Emma Smith, Izzy Fyant, Summer Newman, and Samantha Rensvold. (photo courtesy of Bob Gunderson)

Polson High School coach Jaime Hanson didn’t modify the expectations in his first year as the Lady Pirates manager taking over for long-time coach Larry Smith.

Hanson, who successfully coached the Mission Valley Mariners for several seasons, continued to carry on the same expectations that have made the Lady Pirates’ feeder programs highly successful.

The result of Hanson’s first year as a Lady Pirates’ manager was a second-place finish in the Montana High School Association Class A softball league.

Hanson’s success taking over for Larry Smith was far from instantaneous.

“Taking over for Larry wasn’t an easy task,” Hanson admitted. “I guess I don’t see it as taking over, it’s just running with what is already there, and making a few changes. We had a different approach on different stuff, and our coaching staff did a great job of taking the reigns on what established.”

The expectations of being a Lady Pirate starts with the feeder programs that begin at 8-U, and go all the way to 16, 18-U teams for Polson softball, and as a coach, Hanson is one of the key players in setting a precedent.

“We have a great feeder program, and when you are having the kids in our feeder program that are all gaining game experience by getting out there and playing, you are going to have success,” Hanson said. “I credit the younger teams, coaches and parents now that put in the extra time and money into the future of Lady Pirates softball.”

When scanning a Lady Pirates’ softball roster, one thing that stands out about the second-place finishers is they are young all across the board.

Gone were established veterans to the program such as Quinn Moticka, who ended up playing softball at Dakota State University, Kaelyn Smith, who signed with University of Montana softball which is an NCAA Division I program out of the Big Sky Conference, or Hannah Fryberger, one of the Lady Pirates’ top hitters for several seasons.

Losing several key members of last year’s team didn’t matter because so many varsity-ready players emerged through the feeder system.

“I liked our opportunities because there were a lot of young girls that gained a lot of experience, they all like playing summer ball and are only trying to better themselves,” Hanson said. “Our JV squad this year was phenomenal, and there is a lot of future ahead of us.”

The formula for success at all levels of Lady Pirates softball is simple.

“Our kids, at all levels, put in a lot of hard work because they’ve been taking hacks and fielding ground balls for the last four months,” Hanson said. “They’ve just worked hard at conditioning and worked out in the weight room. The success we’ve had as a program is a credit to themselves putting in the extra time and hard work. That is what they’ve done, and it’s paid off in the end.”

One reason the Lady Pirates have a lot of success in the spring is because of the exposure of different levels they receive in the summer, to not just area teams but regional and national teams that play at high levels of softball.

By the time the players become Lady Pirates, they have the game experience that exceeds age.

“That is the main reason we go to all of these tournaments is I want to get these girls the experience and their names out there,” Hanson said. “If they have a good tournament for themselves, they also get a chance to play different levels ofcompetition, which is only going to benefit them in the long run.”

Hanson is confident in the amount of work the feeder programs put in will translate to continued success during the MHSA-sanctioned competition, and beyond.

With Belgrade, who is transitioning from the MHSA Class A classification to the Class AA starting during the 2019-2020 school season, it will increase the odds of Polson hoisting an MHSA Class A championship trophy.

“Even if Belgrade was coming back to our class, I like our chances,” Hanson said. “When we played Belgrade earlier in the season, we hit Belgrade, and with their backup pitcher throwing, our team scored four runs in the first inning. I like our chances of competing either way.”

Perhaps Hanson’s confidence in his team’s future is a by-product of the success of the current feeder programs in the area.

“We have had a 14-U that was very successful, and they’ve had great success for quite a while,” Hanson said. “We are putting it all together, and our feeder program is just fantastic in Polson.”

Hanson knows the work doesn’t stop in the summer, making a softball is a year-round commitment, and this is another reason the program has continued to generate successful teams in the post-Larry Smith era.

“There is still a lot of off-season work, and a lot of work players do is on their own. When you get players that have 40-plus games under their belt, that is a lot of game experience when you are playing other varsity programs.”

It’s the game experience, combined with Hanson and his coaching staff’s approach towards softball that has turned the Lady Pirates into a championship-caliber machine even after Larry Smith stepped down from a program began his involvement with since 86.

“It’s all about the experience, and the best practice to get in your game is to fine-tune your game in live situations,” Hanson said. “That is the best practice you can get overall. It’s a matter of gaining that experience, and continuing to have fun while you are doing it.”

Silver championship

WA Angels 7, Purple Rain 6 (10 inn.)

Angels (4-1), Purple Rain (3-3)

Kennewick 000 100 031 2 – 7 12 3

Polson 001 000 031 1 – 6 16 3*

Kylie Parsons (8K) and Kiley Heinz. Katelyne Druyvestein (9K,4W) and Kallie Finkbeiner.

WA ANGELS-HOGAN – Alexis Ames 2-4, Chloe Grandeen 2-4, Hadley Dunham 2-4, Paija Rodriguez 2-3, Makenzie Bailey 3-3, Makenzie Ratchford 1-4.

PURPLE RAIN – Anna Vert 1-3, Druyvestein 1-4, Finkbeiner 1-4 Lexy Orien 3-5, Kobbey Smith 2-5, Shae Brown 1-5, Grace Quinones 2-5, Gianna Fyant 2-4, SaVanna Carpentier 1-3, Mossy Kauley 2-4.

2B – Grandeen, Dunham, Rodriguez, Bailey 2; Vert. RBIs – Grandeen, Bailey 2, Ratchford; Druyvestein, Finkbeiner, Orien, Kauley 2. BB – Isabella Qunell, Rodriguez, Parsons, Bailey; Vert 2, Finkbeiner, Carpentier. HB – Druyvestein. SB – Qunell, Grandeen; Druyvestein 2. Runs – Vert, Druyvestein, Finkbeiner, Fyant 2, Kauley. (Su02Jun19gm3brkt)

Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments differ: AngGC (P:14H,3E)

** — * — **

2019 Tormaschy Memorial

Carlon Park, Selah, WA

Friday-Sunday, May 31-June 2

10-U pool play Lil Lakers

E’burg All Stars 7, Lil Lakers 3

Lil Lakers 6, Lady Viks 4

no score reported vs. Wildcats TC

10-U Gold bracket

Lil Lakers lost to Lady Viks

12-U pool play Purple Wave

NCW SunDevils 15, Purple Wave 9

CB Xtreme 6, Purple Wave 6

Purple Wave 16, Selah Viking Warriors 0

12U silver bracket

Purple Wave over Tigers McCloud

silver championship

Purple Wave over Tigers L/E Leaverton-Esparza of yakima

14-U pool play Lakers

Lakers 6, E’burg Synergy 6

Ellensburg 003 30 – 6 7 1*

Polson 100 05 – 6 6 4*

Vicara Zimmerman, (5) Madison Kennedy and Jami Nelson, (4) Reagan Mercer. Ashlyn Depoe (*3K) and Mckenna Hanson.

SYNERGY – Zimmerman 2-2, Kennedy 1-2 (3B, 3RBI), Nelson 2-2, Lily Oke 1-1(RBI), Hailey Bostige 1-2.

LAKERS – Nikki Kendall 0-1(BB), Depoe 1-2(RBI), Hanson 2-2(2RBI), Turquoise Pierre 2-2(2B,2RBI), Alexis Johnson 0-2(RBI), Trinity Towne 1-1

Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments differ: (E:13H,1E/P:7H,3E) - Lexi Bosau (LakGC: 2H; PiScore: ROE,FC=0-2), Depoe 4K

Lakers 8, Octane 2

Lakers 121 220 – 8 8 4

Octane 001 01x – 2 2 7

Nikki Kendall (4.67IP:6K,5W), (5) Ashlyn DePoe (4K) and McKenna Hanson.

LAKERS – Kendall 1-3(FC,RBI,SB), DePoe 1-3(RBI), Hanson 2-2(RBI), Tyneesha Brown 1-2(ROE,RBI,SB), Carli Maley 0-2(FC,D3Kpb), Caitlyn Ward 1-2, Ainsley Nordberg 0-2(FC), Isabella Paul 0-2(ROE), Reegan Stinger 1-2, Julia Barnard 0-2(ROE,RBI), Trinity Towne 1-2(FC,RBI).

SB – Kendall, Brown, Maley

(Sa01Jun19gm2pool)

Cherry City Crush 10, Lakers 1

Alexis Johnson (1K), (2) Isabella Paul (2K), Nikki Kendall (2K) and Caitlyn Ward.

LAKERS – Kendall 1-2(RBI), Tyneesha Brown 2-2(SB), Trinity Towne 1-1(SB)

(Sa01Jun19gm3pool)

NCW SunDevils 14, Lakers 4

Ashlyn Depoe, (2) Nikki Kendall and McKenna Hanson.

LAKERS – Kendall 1-2(RBI), Hanson 1-2, Turquoise Pierre 1-2(3B,2RBI), Alexis Johnson 1-2(RBI), Tyneesha Brown 0-2(RBI), Caitlyn Ward 1-2 (2B), Isabella Paul 1-2(2B).

14-U gold bracket

Lakers 2, Mizuno Maniacs 0

Polson 100 100 0 – 2 8 0

Kennewick 000 000 0 – 0 4 2

Turquoise Pierre (6K) and McKenna Hanson. Anna-Marie Schaffer and Angie Zaring. W – Pierre.

14U LAKERS – Nicki Kendall 1-4, Tyneesha Brown 1-4, Trinity Town 1-4, Hanson 1-3, Depoe 0-2, Pierre 0-2, Caitlyn Ward 1-3, Reegan Stinger 3-3, Isabella Paul 1-3.

14U MIZUNO MANIACS – Melise Brown 1-2, Samantha Henrichs 2-3, Zaring 1-1.

2B – Kendall, Ward. RBIs – Towne, Stinger. sB – Hanson. (Sa02Jun19gm1brkt)

Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments differ: MizGC: Stinger 2H, Ward 2H (PiScore: ROE,2B)

Menace 12, Lakers 9

Menace (10-0), Lakers (2-3)

Polson, MT 010 260 – 9 8 8

Kennewick 360 30x – 12 11 7

Ashlyn Depoe, (5) Turquoise Pierre and McKenna Hanson. Matti Christensen and Alex DeGuia.

14U LAKERS – Nicki Kendall 3-4, Tyneesha Brown 0-4, Trinity Town 1-3, Hanson 1-3, Depoe 0-2, Pierre 0-2, Caitlyn Ward 1-3, Reegan Stinger 1-2, Ainsley Nordberg 0-1, Alexis Johnson 1-3, (cr) Julia Barnard.

14U MENACE-CLARY – Taylor Scully 2-4, Luci Clary *2-4, Madison Bocek 2-4, Claire Heiner 2-4

2B – Kendall; L.Clary, Bocek. RBIs – Kendall 2, Hanson 2, Pierre, Ward, Stinger 2; Gracie Hiner 2, Clary, Maggie O’Leary, Bocek 2, Heiner 2, DeGuia, Makenna Christensen. DP – b1: Pierre, Brown, Stinger. (Sa02Jun19gm2brkt)

Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments differ: MenGC (L:13H,4E/M:19H,2E), PiScore () - L.Clary 4H (PiScore: FC,ROE,H,H; KenGC: H,H,H,H); C.Ward 3H (PiScore: ROE,1B,ROE; KenGC: H,H,H)

Kennewick: 81,607 (2017), Polson 4,875 (2017)

14-U weekend warriors: Nikki Kendall 7-16(2x2B,4RBI); Tyneesha Brown 4-14(RBI,2SB); Mckenna Hanson 6-14(5RBI); Turquoise Pierre 3-13(2B,3B,5RBI); Caitlyn Ward 4-12(2x2B,RBI); Trinity Towne 5-14(3RBI); Reegan Stinger 4-10(3RBI).

16/18-U silver bracket

Carlon Park, Selah

Purple Rain 14, Canes-Burgess 4

Purple Rain (2-2), Canes (0-4)

Ellensburg 020 2 – 4 5 6

Polson 073 4 – 14 11 0

Tess Polacek, (3) Madison Sanchez and catcher. Katelyne Druyvestein (7K) and catcher.

CANES-BURGESS – Tess Polacek 1H

PURPLE RAIN – Grace Quinones 3H, SaVanna Carpentier 2H,

RBIs – Sam Norem 2, Makayla Reid; Carpentier 2. BB – Brown, Finkbeiner.

(Su02Jun19gm1brkt)

Purple Rains 12, Octane Black 2

Purple Rain (3-2), Octane (1-3)

Polson 203 025 – 12 14 0

Ridgefield 000 200 – 2 5 6

Katelyne Druyvestein (6K) and catcher. Mackenzie , (4) Aubree and catcher.

PURPLE RAIN – Grace Quinones 3H, Druyvestein 2H, Kallie Finkbeiner 2H

OCTANE BLACK- –

RBIs – Finkbeiner 4, Ko.Smith 3, Quinones 3.

(Su02Jun19gm2brkt)

Silver Championship

WA Angels 7, Purple Rain 6 (10 inn.)

Angels (4-1), Purple Rain (3-3)

Kennewick 000 100 031 2 – 7 12 3

Polson 001 000 031 1 – 6 16 3*

Kylie Parsons (8K) and Kiley Heinz. Katelyne Druyvestein (9K,4W) and Kallie Finkbeiner.

WA ANGELS-HOGAN – Alexis Ames 2-4, Chloe Grandeen 2-4, Hadley Dunham 2-4, Paija Rodriguez 2-3, Makenzie Bailey 3-3, Makenzie Ratchford 1-4.

PURPLE RAIN – Anna Vert 1-3, Druyvestein 1-4, Finkbeiner 1-4 Lexy Orien 3-5, Kobbey Smith 2-5, Shae Brown 1-5, Grace Quinones 2-5, Gianna Fyant 2-4, SaVanna Carpentier 1-3, Mossy Kauley 2-4.

2B – Grandeen, Dunham, Rodriguez, Bailey 2; Vert. RBIs – Grandeen, Bailey 2, Ratchford; Druyvestein, Finkbeiner, Orien, Kauley 2. BB – Isabella Qunell, Rodriguez, Parsons, Bailey; Vert 2, Finkbeiner, Carpentier. HB – Druyvestein. SB – Qunell, Grandeen; Druyvestein 2. Runs – Vert, Druyvestein, Finkbeiner, Fyant 2, Kauley. (Su02Jun19gm3brkt)

Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments differ: AngGC (P:14H,3E)

Full tournament results can be viewed online at the following cybersite:

< https://gygsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/2019-Tormaschy-Memorial-Final-Results.pdf >

NOTE: 10-U,12-U and 16U scores derived from host venue or opponent postings at the various tournaments. Some details and statistics may vary from Polson books.

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