Arcata

Championship matchups set in H-DNL tournaments

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Ray Hamill/HumboldtSports.com – McKinleyville catcher Dustin Ireland

By Ray Hamill — The top two teams in the Big 5 will compete for the Charles Lakin H-DNL Tournament championship on Friday, in both baseball and softball.

Defending tournament champions Eureka took care of business in both semifinals against Little 4 opposition, with the Loggers defeating crosstown rivals St. Bernard’s 6-1 in baseball and the Eureka girls fighting off a brave Hoopa team in softball to win 4-2.

“Hoopa’s an incredible team,” Eureka co-head coach Katelyn Graeser said afterwards. “If they were in the Big 5, they would definitely be competing for the top three.”

Both Eureka teams will face Big 5 champions McKinleyville in Friday’s championship games.

In baseball, the Panthers edged out rivals Arcata 2-1, the third close matchup between the two neighbors this season.

The win not only sends the Mack boys into the league tournament championship game, but will also go a long way toward securing the No. 1 seed for next week’s North Coast Section playoffs.

“I sure hope so,” McKinleyville head coach Scott St. John said. “We’re 13-1 against Division-IV teams, and we only have two losses overall, so I sure hope so. I’d want to know why if we’re not No. 1.”

The Mack boys (20-2) have been ranked No. 1 among Division-IV teams in the NCS most of the season, with Arcata No. 2.

Both teams could very well meet again in the postseason.

In softball, meanwhile, the Mack girls also took care of business against their closest rivals, rolling over Arcata 11-0.

Olivia Alves finished 3-for-3 with four RBIs in the win, as the Panthers set up a tournament championship rematch with Eureka.

The Mack girls, who took two of three from Eureka last week, will be looking to secure the league and league tournament double.

Friday’s softball championship is set for 5 p.m. at the Arcata Sports Complex, while the baseball decider will take place at the Arcata Ball Park at 7 p.m.

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