By Ray Hamill — It appears as if the North Coast Section playoffs will finally resume this weekend after a tumultuous and controversial couple of weeks.
And that’s good news for St. Bernard’s and Fortuna, each of whom will now try to complete their quarterfinal games in Division IV.
St. Bernard’s will play at San Marin in Novato on Saturday afternoon, with the Huskies playing at Kennedy in Richmond on Saturday night.
And as of Wednesday afternoon, the games are a go.
“(Kennedy) practiced today and said everything is good down there,” Fortuna head coach Mike Benbow said.
Rustiness early could be a problem for all the teams involved, none of whom will have played a game in at least three weeks.
Fortuna will have gone 22 days in between games, while St. Bernard’s will have gone exactly three weeks.
For the two host schools, however, the delay has been even greater, with each of them getting a first-round playoff bye and going almost an entire month between contests.
“It’s nice that we played a game in the first round and San Marin didn’t,” St. Bernard’s head coach Matt Tomlin said. “It’s just one week, but it does make a difference.”
Neither host team has been able to practice much outdoors for the past two weeks either, with the poor air conditions in the Bay Area keeping them indoors.
Both St. Bernard’s and Fortuna defeated their opening-round opponents in comfortable fashion, with both games decided well before halftime.
Fortuna which is seeded sixth, defeated El Molino 55-14 at Husky Field, while No. 5 St. Bernard’s took care of business at home to Albany by a score of 61-28.
Kennedy is seeded No. 3 and comes into the game at 8-2, dropping its regular season finale 28-7 against Salesian, while San Marin is 7-3, having last played at home to Novato, winning 63-6.
The waiting game
Del Norte, Eureka and South Fork, each of which is still alive in their respective brackets, all will have a bye this weekend, having been among the few teams to play their games two weeks ago.
Del Norte is seeded second in Division IV and will host the winner of the Fortuna/Kennedy game in Crescent City next week, while Eureka is seeded No. 2 in Division III and will host the winner of Las Lomas/Terra Linda, also next week.
Both of this Saturday’s games will be broadcast live on The Mix 95.1 FM and the Edge 106.7 FM, with the St. Bernard’s game getting under way at 1 p.m., and the Fortuna game at 7 p.m.
Log onto Humboldt Sports on Friday for a more in-depth preview of both games.