By Ray Hamill — The South Fork Cubs and Hoopa Valley Warriors made history in their own way on Saturday, as each took home a North Coast Section softball championship in very different ways.
The Cubs won a second straight Division-VI championship with a dominating 18-0 win over Laytonville in Miranda, turning in their best performance of the season in their most important game of the season.
“They played really, really well all the way around,” South Fork head coach Lisa Todd said of her players.
The win was bittersweet for the school, which also hosted the Division-VI baseball championship, with the home team falling 8-3 to Credo.
The NCS title is the third ever for the girls program, as the Cubs became just the third H-DNL team to repeat as NCS softball champions.
(Hoopa repeated as NCS champions in both 1979 and 2007, while Ferndale won three successive titles between 2003 and 2005.)
The Hoopa girls, meanwhile, won the Division-V title in very different circumstances, going on the road to knock off No. 1 seed St. Vincent de Paul in Petaluma by a score of 4-3.
In an exciting and hard-fought game, the Warriors had to rally from a 3-2 deficit with runs in each of the sixth and seventh innings securing a thrilling win.
Similar to the Cubs, the Warriors turned in a very strong all-around performance.
“They played with heart today,” Hoopa head coach Glenn Moore said of his players. “They never backed down.”
The NCS title is the first since 2007 for the Hoopa girls, and sixth all-time, tying Ferndale for most ever among H-DNL teams.
Three more local teams will play for an NCS title this coming week, with the McKinleyville girls playing St. Patrick-St. Vincent on Tuesday in the D-IV softball decider, and Mack and Arcata meeting at the Arcata Ball Park on Wednesday night for the D-IV baseball crown.
More on Saturday’s games to follow.