Spartans ‘Bouncing Back’ After the 2021 Season


The boys and girls basketball teams have hit the courts as their season commenced at the end of November after a year of limited spectators and little pride. Both teams have rallied not only to win — but to show the competition that the pandemic doesn’t hinder success. The Lady Spartans have won several games with a team  newcomers to the court. Also new to the Spartas is coach Sarah Pfiefer who was welcomed in late 2021 after Karen Deden retired from the position after many years of coaching teams to the state tournament. Pfiefer told the Spartan Scoop that she is most excited to see the team have fun as they start the season. 

The Lady Spartans have stacked up the wins against Helena Capital and Glacier as a proud start to the first half of the season. The Spartan Boys won their game against CMR with a score of 57-33 and brought home the first win of the season. They then defeated Kalispell Glacier to bring them into a week of crosstown against Big Sky and Hellgate. This will be the first time the Spartans go against the Knights before the Golden Goat; a game that brings spirit and camaraderie to Missoula after bringing in nearly 6,000 people in 2020. Crosstown games have historically been a way for both schools to come together in friendly competition. The pandemic limited the amount of students allowed to attend games but has lifted regulations as the year continued. 

As both teams continue their seasons, boys coach Jason Maki and  Pfiefer agree that they’re excited to see their teams grow on and off the court. Pfiefer also explained that she is excited to see returning varsity players like Brooke Stayner, Kodi Fraiser, and Olivia Huntsigner dominate the court as upperclassmen. Additionally, she is looking forward to seeing the new members of the team: Kassidy Kirgan, Lilly Allen, and Emily McElmurry. Maki adds to this by saying that the team will be “very different from December [to] February.” 

The Spartans boys beat the Big Sky eagles with a win of 60-54. The girls kicked off Tuesday night with a win of 46-36 and to let the rivalry continue. The girls defeated the Eagles with a final score of 46-36 Sentinel. With more than half a season left, both teams are rigorously training and preparing for the rest of the regular season; including a second scheduled game against the Hellgate Knights at the Adams Center. 

The Spartans will host Butte High School on Friday the 21st.