High School SportsMore High School


Polson Pirates looking defend first-ever high school baseball state title

IMG_3198 (1).jpg
Posted at 9:07 PM, Apr 05, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-05 23:07:50-04

POLSON — After winning the first-ever Montana high school baseball state championship last season, the Polson Pirates are eager to defend their title. And with a 6-1 start to this season, the boys in purple and gold are feeling good.

"I think everybody wants it again and kind of out for blood just the same as last year, run it back," said junior captain Landon Shoemake. "And hopefully my senior year we can do it again. That'd be amazing if I could finish off my senior year, and it’d be a great feeling if you just run it back-to-back-to-back."

Confidence and energy couldn’t be higher for the Pirates after only losing three games by a combined six runs last season, then winning the state title over Whitefish 10-4.

"It was great, it was a great feeling just re-watching that last out of the game," Shoemake said with a smile. "I mean, I'm over there jumping like this. It's amazing honestly, and it was just a great feeling."

Senior captain Espn Fisher, who pitched a complete game for the Pirates' championship win last year, knows the team will now have a target on its back. The Pirates graduated only three seniors off last year's squad.

"It feels pretty good. You know, we won last year, but also kind of like people kind of know who we are now," said Fisher. "So I mean, it's kind of a target, but I feel like we kind of reloaded. We lost a couple guys last year, but it should be alright this year, we should do OK."

As for the Pirates' approach to the postseason after the strong start to the year:

"We're probably just trying to win our conference so we can secure that spot," said Fisher. "But when we get there, we want to be probably at our best or just peaking at that point. And hopefully ... we're ready to compete with the top teams that are there."

During both the inaugural season last year and throughout the start of this season, one constant for the Pirates has been their community rallying behind the team.

"They come watch and they support the kids, the community has been great," said head coach Brad Fisher. "After last year and the success we had, I was getting texts from people that have lived here all their lives, gone to school here and they were just so happy for those kids."

When it comes to the team philosophy, it isn’t about winning but rather competing and improving each day.

"Our expectations as far as the year goes, and I tell the kids, it's always just to compete," said Brad Fisher. "We're gonna go out, we’re gonna try to learn and try to do the right thing. And if we win the game, that's great. If we lose it, you know, it is what it is. We're just trying to get better towards the end of the season and peak at the right time."

The Pirates will look to continue building on their strong start to the season and defending their title come state May 16-18 in Missoula.