Arcata Tigers complete weekend sweep of Big 5 rivals

Photos by Ray Hamill/ – Arcata’s Finn McRae in action on Saturday.

The Arcata Tigers completed the series sweep over their biggest rivals on Saturday, winning both ends of a baseball doubleheader at McKinleyville.

After opening the three-game series with a 2-0 win on Friday night, the Tigers won 8-4 and 5-1 on Saturday.

The win lifts the Arcata boys to 5-1 in league play (16-2 overall) and keeps their championship ambitions on track, although head coach Troy Ghisetti described his team’s performances as a “little lethargic.”

“I thought the whole weekend we stepped up when we needed to step up,” Ghisetti said. “But I didn’t think we had that killer instinct. But (McKinleyville) played well.”

The pitching didn’t not disappoint, with Finn McRae and Nick Parker throwing well on Saturday, one day after Vincent Agliolo pitched a gem.

McRae threw six innings in Saturday’s opener allowing two earned runs on eight hits and two walks and striking out seven, before junior Cedar Cline threw one solid inning in relief.

Parker got the win in the nightcap, allowing nine hits in a complete game and striking out five.

“I thought our pitching did a great job this weekend,” Ghisetti said. “Our pitching kept us in the games.”

Parker also provided the offensive highlight of game two with a home run and was 2-for-3 with two RBIs and two runs.

Brayden Craven

Teammate Will Mager added two hits, including a double, while Anthony Ebert had a double and two RBIs and Agliolo had a double and Alex Gorge a single.

Despite the loss, Branson Dobrec pitched five good innings for Mack, allowing just three earned runs on six hits and three walks and striking out one.

Kolbey Stolpe had a big day at the plate for the Panthers, finishing 3-for-3 in game two with a double after going 2-for-3 with a double in game one.

Also in game two, McKinleyville’s Bryce Sargent was 2-for-4, while Tenoch Tapia, Jack Saso, Cody Lackey and Tyson Bragg each had a hit.

Saso had a big weekend defensively at third base against an Arcata team that likes to bunt, while Bragg had a big day at the plate on Saturday, finishing 3-for-4 in game one with a home run and two runs.

“I thought as a whole we played pretty good,” McKinleyville head coach Scott St. John said. “Arcata is one of the top teams in the section and I thought we competed with them.”

McKinleyville’s Riley Bates, who pitched a gem in Friday’s loss, added two hits in game one on Saturday, while Lackey, Brodie Sargent and Logan Maher each also had a hit.

“I was really pleased with Riley Bates,” St. John said of the junior’s pitching performance on Friday. “That was by far the best he’s pitched for us.”

For Arcata in game one, Agliolo was 2-for-3, with two doubles, three RBIs and two runs, while Parker and Miles Oliver each added two hits and Mager was 2-for-3 with a double.

Gorge and Wilson Medina each also had a hit.

Brayden Craven took the loss on the mound, with Evan Fraser pitching in relief.

McKinleyville is 2-7 in the Big 5 and 9-12 overall.

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