Lady Pirates’ future bright after second-place finish

By JASON BLASCO
Lake County Leader

Lady Pirates 2nd Place

Headed into the tournament, former Polson High School softball coach Larry Smith admitted hosting a Montana High School Association Class A state tournament can work two ways: for you, or against you.

In the case of the Lady Pirates, who were the host team this year, they didn’t falter to being in front of their hometown.

They thrived, and the result was a second-place finish after falling to the Belgrade 11-1 in the MHSA Class A championship game Saturday afternoon at Polson High School’s softball complex.

The Polson softball team has become known for their hitting prowess throughout the regular season, and they continued that trend into the Montana High School Association Class A postseason.

Belgrade, who will be joining the MHSA Class AA ranks next season, was able to utilize their playoff experience the Panthers have accumulated over the last two seasons to capture their second consecutive MHSA Class A state softball title.

Next year, the Pirates and the rest of the Class A competition, won’t have to worry about Belgrade, a school that grew exponentially because of the housing boom in the greater Bozeman area.

The Lady Pirates, who were the host team, started the second round of the softball playoffs, after earning a bye by romping Fergus.

Polson was catapulted by Lexi Orien’s grand slam homerun at the bottom of the third that began their all-out assault on Fergus.

Josie Caye proved hitting was contagious, as she smashed a sole homerun in the fourth inning, which was Caye’s seventh homerun on the season. The Lady Pirates’ six runs in the third and three at the bottom of the sixth were enough to capture an 11-1 victory in the second round of the MHSA Class A state playoffs.

In their victory over Fergus, the Lady Pirates had multiple top hitters. Josie Caye and Kaylanna DesJarlais were 3-for-4. Paige Noyes went 2-for-4, Kallie Finbeiner was 2-for-4, and Lexi Orien was 2-for-4 in the effort.  Lisa Castillo also had a double in the victory.

After Polson fell to Hamilton 2-1, they climbed through the loser’s bracket.

Polson rolled Columbia Falls 11-1, they beat their long-standing rival Frenchtown 7-6,  and avenged their loss to Hamilton to climb themselves back into the championship game against Belgrade.

Polson, who had played Belgrade tight in previous games this season, was overpowered by the Belgrade team 11-1 in the MHSA Class A championship game.

The Panthers, who will transfer to MHSA Class AA classification next season, limited the lethal Lady Pirates’ bats.

Lexi Orien and Kallie Finkbeiner would be the only Lady Pirates base runners to reach scoring position in the loss.

Seniors holding state trophy

The Lady Pirates, who finished second in the MHSA Class A classification, were an extension of the Polson softball system that has 8U to 16, to 18U this year. The softball system, which provides aspiring Lady Pirates with essentially a farm system to cultivate up-and-coming talent, proved to be valuable this year. Head coach Jamie Hansen, in his first year of replacing Larry Smith, proved to be more than an adequate replacement as the Lady Pirates continue to forge ahead in their quest for an MHSA Class A state title. A quest that should be made easier with Belgrade transitioning to MHSA Class AA.

At Polson in the State A title tilt, the Lady Pirates would need a Herculian effort to harvest gold, one that would require the equivalent of prying the coveted trophy from between the claws of the paws of the twotime defending champion Lady Panthers. Much like an apex predator at the top of the food chain guarding its prey, AA-bound Belgrade would be reluctant to part with their cherished prize.

Tournament MVP pitcher Erin Elgas would supply the arm, backed up by the solid gloves of defensive fielders behind her and some blistering bats at the plate, to minimize whatever chances might be lurking among the shadows for the top prize to gravitate into the mitts of somebody else.

State A championship

Belgrade 11, Polson 1

In the fifth, 6-2 Panther outfielder Madi Kreiger would stretch her glove over the left field fence for an ESPN highlight reel type catch to commit highway robbery of what would have been a Kallie Finkbeiner home run. Lexi Orien and Finkbeiner would be the only base runners to reach scoring position. Polson’s best team finish since 2013.

(1NW) Polson (21-6), (1C) Belgrade (23-0, 29-1) Polson 000 10 – 1 3 2* Belgrade 070 04 – 11 13 2* Lauren Vergeront (2IP: 4H,0K,2W,2HB), (3) Katelyne Druyvestein (0K,9H,3A) and Kaylanna DesJarlais. Erin Elgas (6K) and Haylee Curry. W – Elgas (17-0). L – Vergeront (19-6).

POLSON – Josie Caye 0-2, DesJarlais 0-3, Paige Noyes 0-2, Lexi Orien 1-2, SaVanna Carpentier 0-2, Vergeront 0-1, Druyvestein 1-1, Kobbey Smith 0-2, Lisa Costilla 0-2, Kallie Finkbeiner 1-2, (cr) Shaeley Brown (p).

BELGRADE – Kenna Thomas *2-2, Kaleigh Bauerle 1-1, Maddisen Tomasetti 1-1, Sheridan Smith 0-1, Madi Kreiger 2-3, Olivia Cook 2-4, Lanie Morgan 2-3, Hazel Eaton 2-3, Ellie Milesnick 0-2, Curry 1-3, Kamie Gorrell 1-3, (flex) Elgas.

*HR – Cook; [Finkbeiner robbed!]. 2B – Bauerle, Morgan; *Orien. RBIs – Thomas, Tomasetti 2, Kreiger 2, Cook 3, Gorrell, Morgan; Druyvestein. SH – Thomas, Tomasetti, Milesnick. BB – Caye; Tomasetti, Kreiger. HB – Thomas, Morgan. ROE – Vergeront; Kreiger, Curry. FC – Gorrell. SB – Morgan. DP – b4: Carpentier, Noyes. (Sa25May19gm22st) Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments exist: BelGC (P:3E/) – Orien (LPiScore: 1B+E8, iJHt: 2B); Thomas 1-1 (LPiScore: HB,SH,1B; BelgGC/ iJHt:ab2=H).

loser takes third Polson 6, Hamilton 2

Kaylanna DesJarlais and Josie Caye both mashed taters, DesJarlais in the third for her fifth of the season and Caye in the fifth for her eighth of the season.

(1NW) Polson (21-5), (2SW) Hamilton (195-2) Hamilton 100 010 – 2 5 1* Polson 201012 – 6 8 3* Jorden Taggart and Katelyne Druyvestein (4.33IP: 1K,3W), Lauren Vergeront (2K,0H,1W) and Kaylanna DesJarlais, (4) Kallie Finkbeiner, (6) DesJarlais. W – Druyvestein (1-0). L – Taggert. Sv – Vergeront.

HAMILTON – Sophia Doyle 2-4, Abby Johnson 0-2, Mikayln Brickley 0-3, Taggart 0-3, Maggie Ringer 0-2, Chantele Sisson 0-3, Haley Frey 0-2, Olivia Zepeda 2-3, Phoebe Howard 0-1, Maria Gutierrez *0-1, (flex) Kyla Shepherd, (cr) Madison Johnson.

POLSON – Josie Caye 1-3, DesJarlais 2-3, Paige Noyes *2-3, Lexi Orien 0-3, SaVanna Carpentier 0-3, Vergeront 1-3, Kobbey Smith 2-3, Lisa Costilla 0-2, Grace Quinones 0-1, Kallie Finkbeiner 0-2, (cr) Anna Vert (c), (cr) Shaeley Brown (p).

HR – DesJarlais, Caye. RBIs – Ringer; *Orien, DesJarlais, Caye, Vergeront, Ko.Smith. BB – Johnson 2, Howard, Ringer. FC – *Doyle, Taggart. SB – S.Brown. CS – Doyle. 2DP – t2: Costilla, Noyes; t7: Caye, Noyes. Runs – Doyle, Zepeda; Caye, Des-Jarlais, Vert, Noyes 2, Brown. (Sa25May-19gm21st) Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments exist: HamGC( H:5H,2E/P:7H,1E) – Ringer (H:1sb; P:0sb), Gutierrez 1-3 (t7- H:1B, P:ROE); Noyes (b1H:ROE; P:1B), Orien 1rbi (H:1rbi, P:2rbi) 

loser takes fourth

Kobbey Smith hits home run
Polson 7, Frenchtown 6 (8 inn.) Kaylanna DesJarlais, Lisa Costilla and Kobbey Smith all mashed taters of a solo variety with Smith supplying the walkoff for the win. Classic Frenchtown vs Polson rivalry, a contest that seesaws back and forth, hangs in the balance and the outcome is uncertain until the final out is secured.

(1NW) Polson (20-5), (1SW) Frenchtown (17-8) Frenchtown 002 000 40 – 6 11 2* Polson 120 020 11 – 7 10 1* Claire Bagnell (1K) and Kendra Williams. Lauren Vergeront (5.33IP: 5K,1W), (6) Katelyne Druyvestein (1.33IP: 1K,2H,2W), (7) Vergeront (1.33IP: 2K,1H,2W) and Kaylanna DesJarlais. W – Vergeront (19-5). L – Cl.Bagnell.

FRENCHTOWN – Cassidy Bagnell *2-4, Mikaela Field 1-5, Layne Bauer 1-5, Taylor Garren 2-4, Cassidy Moen 2-3, Cl. Bagnell 1-2, Hailey Arthur 2-4, Hallie Habeck 0-4, Williams 0-3, (flex) Shelby Miotke.

POLSON – Josie Caye 2-3, DesJarlais 2-4, Paige Noyes 1-4, Lexi Orien 2-3, SaVanna Carpentier 0-4, Vergeront 1-3, Druyvestein 0-1, Kobbey Smith 1-4, Lisa Costilla 1-3, Kallie Finkbeiner 0-3, (cr) Anna Vert (c), (cr) Shaeley Brown (p).

HR – DesJarlais, Costilla, Ko.Smith. 2B – Ca.Bagnell, Bauer; Orien, Caye. RBIs – Bauer, Garren 2, Cl.Bagnell, Arthur 2; Caye, DesJarlais, Orien 2, Ko.Smith, Costilla 2. BB – Ca.Bagnell, Moen, Cl.Bagnell 2, Williams; Caye, Orien. ROE – Ca.Bagnell; Finkbeiner. FC – Vergeront, Ko.Smith. SB – Ca.Bagnell 2. CS – Caye. Runs – Ca.Bagnell, Field, Bauer, Garren, Moen, Williams; Caye, Des-Jarlais, (cr) Vert, Ko.Smith 2, Costilla, Finkbeiner. (Sa25May19gm21st) Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments exist: FrGC( F:12H,2E/P:13H,0E) – Vergeront (F:H, P:FC), Ko.Smith (F:H, P:FC), Finkbeiner (F:H,P:ROE).

Polson 11, Columbia Falls 1

Lexy Orien mashed her sixth tater of the season, while Josie Caye, Paige Noyes and Lauren Vergeront inflicted doubles troubles upon the conference rival WildKats.

(1NW) Polson (19-5), (2NW) C-Falls (14-121) C-Falls 000 001 – 1 3 4 Polson 113 222 – 11 12 0 Savvy Ellis and GraceAnne Sevesind. Lauren Vergeront (5.33IP:4K,1HB), (6) Ellie Thiel and Kaylanna DesJarlais. W – Vergeront (185). L – Ellis. Sv – Thiel.

COLUMBIA FALLS – Kaylee Ashe 1-3, Alyssa Blankenship 0-3, Trista Cowan 0-3, Sevesind 1-2, Ryley Kehr 0-2, Isabel Johnson 0-2, Chloe Kienas 0-2, Ellis 0-1, McKenna Rensel 1-2.

POLSON – Josie Caye *2-2, DesJarlais *13, Grace Quinones 0-1, Paige Noyes 2-4, Lexi Orien 2-4, SaVanna Carpentier *2-4, Vergeront 1-2, Kobbey Smith 2-3, Lisa Costilla 0-3, Kallie Finkbeiner 0-2, (cr) Anna Vert (c), (cr) Shaeley Brown (p).

HR – Orien. 2B – Caye, Noyes, Vergeront, Carpentier. RBIs – Noyes, Orien 2, Vergeront, Carpentier 2. SF – Vergeront. SH – Frey. BB – Caye 2, Finkbeiner. HB – Ellis. SB – Caye 2, (cr) Vert. DP – b3:Caye, Noyes. (Fr24May19gm18st) Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments exist: LPiScore (P:9H,0E) – Caye 1-2 (ROE vs 1B:iJHt), Des-Jarlais 0-2 (SH vs BT:iJHt), Carpentier 1-4 (ROE vs 1B+E:iJHt).

Hamilton 2, Polson 1

Knotted at one apiece, the Broncs bombers from Hamilton would plate a late inning run to buck the Bucs from the saddle of their own tournament.

(1NW) Polson (18-5), (2SW) Hamilton (193-2) Polson 100 000 0 – 1 9 2* Hamilton 010 001 x – 2 4 1* Lauren Vergeront (4IP:3K,1W,1HB,1PO,1A), (5) Katelyn Druyvestein (2K,1A) and Kaylanna DesJarlais. Jorden Taggart and Haley Frey. W – Taggart. L – Vergeront (17-5) 

POLSON – Josie Caye 0-2, DesJarlais 1-3, Paige Noyes 2-3, Lexi Orien 2-4, SaVanna Carpentier *1-3, Vergeront 1-2, Druyvestein 0-1, Kobbey Smith 2-3, Lisa Costilla 0-2, Kallie Finkbeiner 0-3, (cr) Anna Vert (c), (cr) Shaeley Brown (p).

HAMILTON – Sophia Doyle 1-3, Abby Johnson 2-3, Mikayln Brickley 0-2, Taggart 0-2, Maggie Ringer 1-3, Chantele Sisson 0-3, Haley Frey 0-2, Olivia Zepeda 1-2, Phoebe Howard 0-2, (flex) Kyla Shepherd, (cr) Madison Johnson.

2B – DesJarlais, Ko.Smith; Abby Johnson. RBIs – Zepeda. SH – Costilla; Brickley. BB – Caye 2; DesJarlais,Taggart. HB – Frey. *ROE – Frey. FC – Orien, Ko.Smith. DP: b2: Brickley, Johnson, Sisson. (Th23May19gm13st) Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments exist: LPiScore (P:7H/H:4H), HamGC (P:4H,1E/H:5H,3E) Noyes 1-3 (H:ROE, P:H+E), Carpentier 0-3 (H:ROE, P:1B+E), Vergeront 0-2 (H:ROE only, P:H+E) 

Polson 11, Fergus 1

Lexy Orien mashed a tater in the bottom of the third for her fifth home run of the season, a grand slameroni, while Josie Caye mashed a solo tater in the fourth, her seventh of the season as the Lady Pirates tethered the talons of the Lady Golden Eagles.

(1NW) Polson (18-4), (2C) Fergus (14-10)Fergus 100 000 – 1 2 3* Polson 006 113 – 11 18 2* Jessica Morgan, (6) Macy Mangold and Jacy Ayers. Lauren Vergeront (7K,2W,1HB), (6) Katelyne Druyvestein (1W) and Kaylanna DesJarlais. W – Vergeront (17-4). L – J.Morgan.

FERGUS (LEWISTOWN) – Kaycee Gordon 0-3, Morgan 0-3, Mangold 0-1, Bailey Castillo 2-3 Hailey Welsch 0-3, Libby Jenness 0-2, Madison Affolder 0-3, Chelsea Jensen 0-1, Jacy Ayers 0-2.

POLSON – Josie Caye 3-4, DesJarlais 3-4, Paige Noyes 2-4, Lexi Orien 2-4, SaVanna Carpentier *1-3, Vergeront *1-3, Druyvestein 1-1, Kobbey Smith 3-4, Lisa Costilla 0-4, Kallie Finkbeiner 2-4, (cr) Anna Vert (c), (cr) Shaeley Brown (p).

HR – Orien, Caye. 2B – Castillo; Carpentier. RBIs – Caye 2, Orien 4, Ko.Smith 2, Finkbeiner 2. SH – Carpentier. BB – Mangold 2, Jenness. HB – Jensen. ROE – Gordon; Ko.Smith. FC – Caye, DesJarlais, Runs – Mangold; Caye 2, (cr) Vert, Orien 2, Carpentier, (cr) Brown 2, Ko.Smith 2, Finkbeiner. (Th23May19gm5st) Asterisk (*) denotes stat variant(s) where alternative assessments exist: Pvenue – Carpentier 1-4(fo,H,k,SH) Pvenue (F:2H,2E/P:17H,1E), FergGC (F:2H,3E/P:16H,1E) – Ko.Smith 4H,3rbi

Lady Pirates secure conference championship and a #1 state tourney seed.

The Lady Pirates took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first, pushed that to 4-1 through four innings and never trailed. They had 12 hits to Columbia Falls’ 10. Kaylanna DesJarlais had two hits, including a home run for Polson. Kobbey Smith hit a homer run and Josie Caye, Paige Noyes and Lexy Orien each had a double.

In a battle of the top two Northwest A teams, Polson emerged with a 7-4 victory over Columbia Falls to win the Northwest A conference championship and clinch a No. 1 seed at the State A tournament it’ll host next week.

The Lady Pirates are 16-4 overall, 6-1 in league games with one to go. Columbia Falls is second at 12-10, 5-3.

Polson 7, C. Falls 4

Polson1012012 7120
CFalls0010021 4100

WP — Lauren Vergeront, Katelyne Druyvestein (6) and Kaylanna DesJarlais. LP — Savvy Ellis and Graceanne Sevesind.

Hits — Polson: Josie Caye 2 (2B), DesJarlais 2 (HR), Paige Noyes 2 (2B), Lexy Orien 2 (2B), Savanna Carpentier, Kobbey Smith 2 (2B), Lisa Costilla.

Hits — C. Falls: Kaylee Ashe, Trista Cowan 2, Sevesind 3 (2B), Ryley Kehr (HR), Isabell Johnson 2, McKenna Rensel, Chloe Kienas 2 (2B).

RBIs — Polson: DesJarlais, Smith, Caye, Finkbeiner, Costilla.

RBIs — C. Falls: Kehr, Rensel, Kienas 2.

Frissell excels at Polson ABC Invite

By JASON BLASCO, Lake County Leader

The Polson and Ronan High School track teams are stockpiled with talent all throughout the events, and in particular, the distance events for both teams are especially strong.

Both teams showcased their ability in multiple events at the ABC-Invite Saturday afternoon in Polson.

Both of the teams proved they had the athleticism to excel in all 17 events, and the proof is in the results as these teams get closer and closer to the Montana High School Association’s biggest stage.

Barney, Ducharme excel in 100

Ronan’s Kinsley Barney and Mikaela Ducharme both excelled in the 100-meter run. Barney, who finished second in the 100, recorded a time of 12.93, and Ducharme placed fifth recording a time of 13.51. Barney set a personal record en route to her first-place finish in the 200, recording a time of 26.28.

Frissel PRs in 1,600

Bea Frissell is now officially one of the most decorated athletes in the recent history of Lady Pirates cross country, and the senior continues to stockpile more firstplace finishes to her resume.

Frissell, who captured second in the 800, recorded a time of 2:23.00.

Frissell placed first in the 1,600, recording a time of 5:05.38, setting a personal record and breaking her own PHS school record set earlier this year.

Ducharme excels long, high jump

Polson track participant Mikaela Ducharme had two top-five finishes in the jumping events.

Ducharme captured first-place in the long jump recording a distance of 17-03, setting a personal record. Durcharme, and her Lady Pirates teammate Maggie Todd, also finished strong in the triple jump. Ducharme recorded a cumulative distance of 34-09.00 for second place, and Todd finished third with a distance of 32-02.50.

Lady Pirates dominate Combo tourney in Butte

By JASON BLASCO. Lake County Leader

The Polson Lady Pirates softball showcased the strength of the Western portion of the Montana High School Association Northwest-A conference by sweeping all contest in the Laverne Combo Tournament Friday and Saturday at Butte.
The Pirates outscored Havre, Park County, Glasgow, and Miles City by a score of 45-4, which is indicative of the team’s momentum as they approach the Montana High School Association state softball tournament May 23-24.

In the first game against Havre, the Pirates continued to pressure their defense, in the 11-4 victory. Polson scored three-consecutive runs in the first two innings, and the proceeded to score eight runs in the final three innings to end the contest quickly.

Pirates pitcher Lauren Vergeront pitched three innings with four strikeouts.
Katelyn Druyvestein relieved Vergeront for the last two innings, had one strikeout and allowed one hit. The Lady Pirates’ Kobbey Smith hit 2-for-3 at the plate, with a home run. Other top hitters included Paige Noyes and Lisa Costilla. Costilla was 3-for-3 at the plate, and Vergeront was 2-for-3, with a triple, in the victory over the Blue Ponies.

The Lady Pirates also dominated Park County High School (Livingston) on Friday by a score of 9-0.

In Saturday’s games Vergeront continued her dominant pitching with wins over Glasgow and Miles City. The Lady Pirate pitcher didn’t allow a single run in either contest. Vergeront allowed five hits in the shutout in which she got plenty of offensive support from her Lady Pirates team. Kaylanna DesJarlais had back-to-back home runs against Miles City. DesJarlais blasted two home run in the victory and contributed to half of the Lady Pirates’ run total with her six-RBi performance. Lady Pirates’ player Lexi Orien also had a home run, with her two-RBI performance.

Polson boys, girls tennis prepares for MHSA Divisional, state

By JASON BLASCO, Lake County Leader

To understand the fiercely competitive landscape of Montana High School girls tennis take a glance at Polson Lady Pirates No. 1 Shea McGuinness’s win-loss record this year.

Last season, McGuinness went virtually unchallenged and won over 30-consecutive matches on her way to capturing the Montana High School Class A state singles championship.

McGuinness, who faced Whitefish’s No. 1 singles player Gracie Smyley, earned the respect of Whitefish tennis coach Chris Schwaderer, who was very complimentary of McGuinness’s play, according to Pirates coach Bob Hislop.

Smyley, a transfer from the state of Florida, is one of the perennial favorites to capture a Montana High School Association state singles title this season but challenged by McGuinness.

“There were 10 or 15 shot rallies, and (Shea) competed with Gracey point after point,” Hislop said. “Even though she fell short on the better portion of those rallies, moving forward if you are realistic and if you are a positive person, you look at two points here, or two points there, and (your perspective) begins to change. The more you win those points, the pressure gets tighter on the other person, and it becomes harder to win.”

The Lady Pirates, who are the defending MHSA team champions from the 2018 season, hope to have an opportunity to defend their title, and it will start with the Montana High School Association Northwestern-A Divisionals May 17-18 in Columbia Falls.

Some of the top-tier teams that will contend with Polson for the MSHA crown include Hardin, Whitefish, Corvallis, Dillon.

“Our division is just stacked in singles and doubles,” Hislop said.

The Pirates have one of the top doubles teams emerging in Berkley Ellis and Qia Harlan. The pair won a tight three-set match against one of the top Whitefish doubles teams.

“(Berkley and Qia) had a great year, they understand each other and they play well together,” Hislop said. Hislop said he’s noticed improvement from Megan Rost, Ara Mercer, Sarah Kinzel, Taylor Bloomfield, and Taylor Collinge.

“Those four girls have all played a ton, Sarah and Taylor are only sophomores, and they are still learning the game,” Hislop said. “Learning tennis is a lot of hard work, and it’s pretty complex. The next couple of years are going to be fun. You have to some patience, and you can’t string them along too fast. These players have to bring themselves up to speed, and when they are ready for that will be the fun part.”

Pirates get ready for the next step

The Polson High School boys tennis team got an opportunity for a tune-up with Whitefish before entering the Montana High School Association Northwest-A Divisionals in Columbia Falls on May 17-18.

Both of the Whitefish girls and boys teams are two of the top-tier teams in tennis, and Pirates coach Bob Hislop admits his team won’t face too many opponents tougher than them heading into the postseason.

The Pirates boys team, by Hislop’s admission, is young and inexperienced, but continues to grow from their experiences in recent matches.

“We had some rough losses, but at the same token, (our team) had some nice wins,” Hislop said. “Some of the kids that lost in individual and single games really showed their mettle and played way better in the dual session. I like what happened, and how the kids competed.”

Hislop said he was pleased with the performance of his top-three boys singles players and how they responded to playing the Bulldogs, one of the top-tier teams in the state of Montana.

The Pirates, who are getting ready to enter Divisional competition, have continued to get a strong performance from their No. 1 player Joe McDonald.

“Joe did a nice job and is almost in every game,” Hislop said. “It was just a matter of winning, getting more seasoned, trying to win those points and playing up to your potential.”

Hislop said he was also pleased with the performance of Matt Hobbs, who played a tough match against a future University of Montana Grizzly football player, and showcased his athleticism in the loss.

The Pirates will take the next step as they continue to march forward into the postseason and will face new challenges in their quest to qualify for state, both as individuals and as a team.

“During the tournament format, there are a lot of changes,” Hislop said. “Divisionals are different, and playing at state is monumentally different.”