By Ray Hamill — Nine local high school soccer teams have qualified for the North Coast Section playoffs, which get under way this coming week.
On the girls side, the top five Humboldt-Del Norte League teams were all included in the brackets, which were announced early Sunday.
And all five of them will have a first-round bye before opening the postseason on Saturday.
In Division I, the H-DNL earned four of the top five seeds, including No. 1 Eureka, which capped an undefeated season locally with a 3-0 win over Fortuna in Saturday’s league tournament championship game at Albee Stadium.
The Loggers will open at home to either No. 8 Cloverdale or No. 9 Willits.
Also hosting next weekend are No. 2 Fortuna and No. 3 Arcata, while No. 5 McKinleyville will travel to play No. 4 Middletown.
The Huskies, who finished second in this year’s H-DNL, will open against either No. 7 St. Helena or No. 10 Lower Lake.
The Tigers will open against No. 6 Roseland University Prep, which also received a first-round bye.
In Division III, the St. Bernard’s girls are seeded second behind No. 1 Technology, and will host No. 3 Credo next Saturday in the bracket semifinal.
On the boys side, meanwhile, H-DNL champion Fortuna is seeded No. 3 in Division I and will open next weekend at home to No. 6 Oakland Military Institute in the bracket quarterfinals after each was handed an opening-round bye.
No. 5 Del Norte, which finished second to the Huskies in the H-DNL, will also have a first-round bye before playing at No. 4 Gateway.
Arcata and Eureka also made the grade, with the No. 8 Tigers hosting No. 9 Willits at McKinleyville High in the opening round on Wednesday night, and the No. 10 Loggers traveling to play No. 7 Cloverdale on the same night.