Victoria Advocate AdvoSports

Shiner state championship teams recall glory days

Friday, September 9, 2016
by Mike Forman, Advocate Sports

Victoria Advocate Sports Article   |   Shiner Comanche Football   |   Shiner Comanche Sports

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Shiner running back Chris Baer twists into the end zone to score the game-winning touchdown against Big Sandy during the Class 1A state semifinal in 2004 in Waco. Baer carried three Big Sandy defenders into the end zone with 25.2 seconds remaining to lift the Comanches to a 21-17 win. Shiner went on to the state championship game where it defeated Stratford 33-19, and Baer was named the MVP of the game.
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photo by Kerri Besio, Victoria Advocate (2004)
SHINER - Garet Pustka remembers sitting in the dugout at Disch-Falk Field in Austin for over three hours before rain postponed the [2004] state semifinal game.

He recalls overcoming a big deficit late in the game the next day to advance to the final.

But what Pustka will never forget is standing on the field with his Shiner teammates at Dell Diamond in Round Rock having gold medals draped around their neck after winning the state championship game.

"It's always a goal at the beginning of the season," Pustka said. "As it goes on, it just kind of happens. It's not something you go out and play every night with that in mind. It just kind of progresses and it gets to that point in the season where you're going, 'We really do have a chance.'"

The 2004 baseball title was Shiner's seventh state championship, and it has gone on to win seven more state titles in football, softball, tennis and track and field.

The most recent state titles came last season [2016] in softball and girls track and field.

"Yes, you have to be very lucky, but you also have to put yourself in that situation," said Shiner athletic director Steven Cerny. "It's just that belief. That's part of Shiner's tradition. We think we can win no matter what."

Shiner will celebrate the 11 state championships won between 1981, when coach Jerry Bonewald's team brought home a baseball title, to the 2011 softball title won by coach Brandon Siegel's team with reunions during halftime of Friday night's football game against Falls City at Comanche Stadium.
Shiner State Championships

"When coach Bonewald won his, it was a really big deal because we had never won one that I know of," said Shiner defensive coordinator Billy Turek, who was the defensive coordinator for the 1986 state championship football team. "He did a good job. He got his kids fired up and they won the state championship.

"Back in '86, we just had a good team. We were just good. That was the first time we won in football and that was a great celebration. The last 10 to 15 years we seem to be winning quite a few of them."

Daniel Boedeker won a state baseball championship as a player in Shiner [in 1992] and he's been part of state championship teams in football [in 2004] and baseball as an assistant [in 2002] and head coach [in 2004].

"The luck part has got to be there and obviously staying healthy, but it's just one of those things where you have to catch the breaks at the right time," Boedeker said. "We've had some teams that we felt were really good and we didn't get there. There were some teams where we started years out slow with and built up with and made it there. Everything has to happen at the right time."

Cerny has won five state titles as a head coach - two in softball [in 2015 & 2016], two in baseball [in 1992 & 2002] and one in football [in 2004].

He points to the continuity of his coaching staff, which includes Turek, Boedeker, Pustka and Wendell Boner, who was a member of the staff in 2004 when the Comanches won the state football championship.

"Every one has been different, and every one has been special in its own way," Cerny said. "One common factor still is when you do have that team that wins it and I talk about it all the time - to win big games you've got to have big plays. We've always had somebody step up and make big plays. That's the key for you to win it all."

Cerny gives most of the credit to Shiner's athletes for their willingness to work hard to achieve success.

"It doesn't matter if a team is bigger or stronger or not, we're going to outwork them," he said. "We're going to out- hustle them and that's going to be our key to try and overcome them."

[ WEBMASTER NOTE: Dates in brackets and links in story above were added to enhance the state championship reading experience. SB ]

More Shiner State Championship Photos
all photos by Victoria Advocate photographers as credited
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The Shiner Lady Comanches hold up the trophy after defeating Bosqueville to capture the 1A state softball championship in 2008.
(photo by T.C. Baker)
Shiner baseball players celebrate their 1A state championship over McLeod in 2002.
(photo by Greg McReynolds)
The Shiner baseball team celebrates its 1A state championship win in 2002 against McLeod at Disch-Falk Field in Austin. The Comanches won 5-3.
(photo by Greg McReynolds)
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Falls City's Derek Sturm attempts to stop Shiner's Chris Baer during the 1A state quarterfinal in 2003.
(photo by Kerri Wenzel)
Shiner's Chris Baer tries outrun the Falls City defense during the 1A state quarterfinal in 2003.
(photo by Kerri Wenzel)
Shiner players Dustin Pohler (left) and Nick Evans (right) accept the 2004 Class 1A State Semifinal trophy after their win over Big Sandy.
(photo by Kerri Wenzel)

Mike Forman is a sports writer for the Victoria Advocate. Contact him at 361-580-6588 or

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