By Ray Hamill — The local prep baseball season is officially under way.
Over the weekend, several teams were in action, some playing their season openers, and some getting in some valuable scrimmage time.
Both Eureka and Fortuna traveled south for doubleheaders on Saturday, with the Huskies dropping a pair of games at Kelsevyille and the Loggers splitting a pair against Santa Rosa and Ukiah in Ukiah.
On Friday, the Ferndale Wildcats opened with a 9-2 win at home to Del Norte.
Also in action on Friday, St. Bernard’s, Arcata and McKinleyville scrimmaged with each other at Bomber Field in Eureka.
Both of the Fortuna games were competitive affairs, with the Huskies losing by scores of 8-7 and 6-5.
The Loggers, meanwhile, also played in a couple of close games, losing 8-7 to Santa Rosa in game one, before bouncing back to knock off Ukiah 3-0.
Returning senior standout David Vagle pitched all seven innings for the win, allowing just four hits and striking out five, while walking none.
“In the second game it was all about our starting pitcher David Vagle,” Eureka head coach Jackie Christensen said. “He kept a great pace.”
Leading the way at the plate, Keenan Morris was 2-for-4 with a double and two runs scored, while Brady Munson was 2-for-4 and scored the other run.
Drew Nylander also had a pair of hits, including a double, and put his team up by three in the fifth, which was the run support all Vagle needed.
Isaak Gutierrez rounded out an eight-hit team performance.
Earlier in the day, the Loggers led 7-5 heading into the bottom of the seventh, but saw the advantage slip away when Santa Rosa scored three times for the come-from-behind win.
Vagle and Kalebh Hill each finished with a pair of hits in the loss, while Isley Tulmau was 1-for-2 with a walk, a stolen base and two runs scored.
Nylander, who has started the season well, had a clutch two-RBI hit to give the Loggers a two-run lead in the top of the seventh.
Morris and Jackson Giacone each also had a hit in the loss.
Hill took the loss on the mound in relief.
“Overall it was a great day of baseball for us,” Christensen said. “We didn’t get the win in the first game against Santa Rosa but we battled back and put ourselves in a good position late and just couldn’t close the door.”