NCS playoff brackets released


Photos by Ray Hamill/ – Eureka’s Isaac Gutierrez, left, and McKinleyville’s Dustin Ireland look on during Friday night’s H-DNL tournament championship game at the Arcata Ball Park.

By Ray Hamill — The North Coast Section playoff brackets were finalized on Saturday for both baseball and softball, with few surprises for the local teams.

A total of 12 H-DNL teams were included, with 11 getting to host games.

All told, the H-DNL received seven top-two seeds, including three at No. 1, and none of the 12 were seeded outside the top eight.

In baseball, as expected, McKinleyville received the top seed in the Division IV after a regular season for the ages, with Arcata seeded No. 2.

Both teams will have an opening-round bye and will host a quarterfinal game next Saturday.

In Division V, St. Bernard’s is No. 2, as expected, behind No. 1 Berean Christian.

The Crusaders will open against No. 15 Sonoma Academy at home on Tuesday, which will be a busy day for local teams, with four of them hosting first-round games at 5 p.m.

Also in action on Tuesday, Eureka will host No. 10 San Rafael after receiving the No. 7 seed.

The Loggers, who clinched the H-DNL tournament on Friday night, are ranked No. 3 in the NCS bracket by MaxPreps and were expecting a higher seed.

Joining St. Bernard’s in the Division-V bracket, Ferndale is seeded No. 8 and will host No. 9 Cloverdale, also on Tuesday.

And rounding out the local baseball contingent, defending section champion South Fork received the top seed and will have a mid-week bye before hosting next Saturday.


Eureka shortstop Sadie Hampton

Good news for Arcata, Hoopa

Six local teams also made the grade in softball, all of them seeded in the top six in their respective brackets.

As expected, Big 5 and league tournament champions McKinleyville is seeded No. 2 in Division IV, behind unbeaten No. 1 Cloverdale, with an opening-round bye for both teams.

In Division III, Eureka received the No. 5 seed and will open at home No. 12 San Rafael on Tuesday.

Two local teams who weren’t sure they would get a home game both did, with Hoopa Valley getting plenty of respect in Division V as the No. 2 seed, and Arcata getting the six seed in Division IV.

The Warriors will have an opening-round bye before hosting No. 7 University next Saturday, and will host a second game if they win that one.

Arcata will open against No. 11 Berean Christian on Wednesday, the only local game that day.

Also in Division V, No. 5 St. Bernard’s will play at No. 4 Clear Lake next Saturday after both teams received a first-round bye.

And finally in Division VI, the South Fork girls got the top seed and will have a mid-week bye before hosting either No. 4 Emery or No. 5 Potter Valley next weekend.

The South Fork girls are also defending section champions.

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