VIDEO — Little 4 opens with plenty of offense


Ray Hamill/ – The Ferndale Wildcats scored 45 points against the Arcata Tigers, who had allowed just seven points in their two previous games.

By Ray Hamill — Fasten your seat belts, if opening night was any indication this year’s Little 4 is going to be a thrilling ride.

On Friday night, Arcata, Ferndale, Hoopa and McKinleyville combined for 150 points in the two games, with the Cats topping the Tigers 45-38 and the Warriors holding off the Panthers 40-27.

A total of 21 touchdowns were scored, including three each by Ferndale’s Landon Gomes and McKinleyville’s Caleb Martinez, the latter of whom had a career game and finished with 252 yards on 24 carries.

One of Gomes’ TDs came on a 90-yard kickoff return, capping a blistering 65-second spell midway through the third quarter that saw 23 points scored.

Arcata’s Niko Zambas, Ferndale’s Javier Lopez, Arcata’s Kien Mazzotti and Hoopa’s Jasper Hostler and Tristin Campbell each had a pair of TDs, while Hoopa quarterback John Smith threw for five TDs.

And it wasn’t just the scoring plays that were impressive.

Check out some highlights here of Arcata receivers Zambas and Raven Perez, and watch each battle for extra yards against multiple defenders.

It was impressive and inspirational by both players, each of whom had outstanding nights despite the loss.

Week two of the Little 4 sees McKinleyville host Arcata at the Redwood Bowl and Ferndale travel to Hoopa.

Both games are on Friday night.

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