It was a big weekend on the local soccer front with two of the Humboldt-Del Norte League teams clinching a North Coast Section title.
In boys action, Fortuna won its second Division-I crown in three years, a remarkable achievement for a team with just four returning players this season.
The Huskies were led at the back all season by senior captain Jackson Fairbanks, who closed out his high school career with a couple of big performances, earning him Humboldt Sports athlete of the week honors.
On the girls side, Arcata may have lost to a high-flying Eureka team in their Division-I decider, but the Tigers closed out the season with a big week, reaching the title game against the odds.
Senior Nina Crossen was outstanding in both the semifinal and championship games, earning her athlete of the week honors as well.
Team of the week honors go to the Ferndale Mustangs who clinched the Six Rivers Youth Football AAA championship with a hard-fought win over McKinleyville.
ATHLETES OF THE WEEK
Fortuna Soccer, Senior
Fairbanks has been arguably the most consistent performer in the H-DNL all season, and was outstanding once again in the championship game, leading from the back as the Huskies twice battled from behind on the way to winning the NCS title in overtime.
Fairbanks was one of just four players back this year for the Huskies, and set the tone as they quickly adapted on the way to a dominating season.
For more on Fairbanks’ big week, see Fortuna boys ‘show a lot of heart’ in NCS win …
Arcata Soccer, Senior
Crossen capped a standout season with a couple of very strong performances in the NCS playoffs last week, as the Tigers upset No. 2 seed Fortuna in the semifinal, before falling to the Loggers in Saturday’s championship game.
Crossen was instrumental in Arcata reaching the championship game, helping the Tigers grow as a team through the season and peak at the right time, while closing out her high school career in style .
For more on Crossen’s big week, see Tigers win big showdown at Husky Field …
TEAM OF THE WEEK
Ferndale AAA Football
Congratulations to the Ferndale Mustangs who are the 2018 Six Rivers Youth Football Conference AAA champions after defeating McKinleyville 19-16 in Sunday’s championship game at the Redwood Bowl.
More impressively, the Ferndale players had to rally from an early two-touchdown deficit to pull out the win, displaying what head coach Jim Cook described as a lot of character in doing so.
To cap it all, Ferndale closed out the season a perfect 9-0.
For more on the big win, see Ferndale, Del Norte Gold, Eureka all win youth football titles …