It’s a pity the H-DNL baseball season was as short as it was, because a number of teams were just getting warmed up.
Including a young McKinleyville Panthers team, which won its final series of the spring against a very competitive Fortuna team, winning the deciding game 5-4 at Fortuna on Monday afternoon.
Riley Bates got the victory on the mound, pitching six strong innings before the Huskies rallied late to make things interesting and scored all four of their runs in the seventh.
The Panthers, however, held on to take their second Big 5 series of the spring.
Bates allowed three earned runs on five hits and one walk, while striking out four.
Austin Brown came in to get the save.
At the plate for McKinleyville, Tenoche Tapia finished 3-for-4, while the team’s two seniors, Corbin Eichin and T-Ryan Stumpf, both closed out their high school careers on a high with a pair of base hits each.
Brodie Sargent also had two hits in the win, as the Panthers improved to 6-8.
Brown and Jack Saso each also had a hit in the win.
For Fortuna, which closed out 6-6 in the Big 5 and 8-6 overall, Aaron Head-Mason and Daniel Osborne each had two hits, while Cole Ayala had a double.
Joey Quen pitched five plus strong innings, but took the loss, before Wyatt Wilson came in late.
Quen and Wilson were among the 10 seniors honored before the game.
“It was senior day for us and we were able to play all 10,” Olsen said. “It was a big senior class, but it was nice for them to close out with a big year.”
The Huskies were more competitive this season than they have been in a few years.
“We were blessed to have a season with the uncertainty,” Olsen said. “And it was nice to be competitive. We went seven innings in every game, and it was competitive baseball.”
Wilson, Regan Nyberg and Ethan Ward each also had a hit for the Huskies.