By Ray Hamill — Six local teams are moving on in the North Coast Section baseball and softball playoffs after wins on Wednesday evening.
In Division-IV baseball, McKinleyville and Arcata remain on course for a championship showdown, with each winning a home quarterfinal on Wednesday.
The No. 1 seed McKinleyville boys knocked off the defending section champions Redwood Christian 3-0, with Cameron Saso and Lance Lally combining for the shutout on the mound and some timely hitting from the bottom of the order.
The Panthers will now host No. 5 Fort Bragg in a semifinal on Friday at 5 p.m.
The No. 2 Arcata Tigers also lived up to their billing, defeating last season’s section runners-up, Piedmont, 3-1 at the Arcata Ball Park.
Arcata will now host No. 3 St. Patrick St. Vincent in the other semifinal on Friday, and a win for both Big 5 programs will set up a championship showdown between the two next week.
In Division-VI baseball, No. 1 seed South Fork also won at home on Wednesday, defeating No. 4 San Francisco Waldorf 7-1 to set up a championship meeting against No. 2 Credo on Saturday at 1 p.m.
In softball action, meanwhile, the McKinleyville girls kept the school on track for an NCS double with a very comfortable 10-0 win over visiting Kennedy in five innings.
McKenzie Gonsalves pitched a two-hitter and 10 different McKinleyville players combined for 12 hits as the Panthers set up a semifinal showdown at home to No. 3 Cardinal Newman on Friday.
Newman got the better of Arcata in Santa Rosa by a score of 9-1, ending a memorable season for the Tigers.
In Division-V softball, meanwhile, the Hoopa Valley girls kept their big season going with a 4-2 win at home to Credo.
With the win, the No. 2 Warriors advanced to this weekend’s NCS championship game against No. 1 St. Vincent de Paul in Petaluma.
In Division-VI softball, the South Fork Cubs rounded out a great day for the H-DNL teams, beating Emery in their semifinal and also advancing to a weekend championship showdown.