The McKinleyville girls scored the only goal of the game with three minutes remaining to knock off Arcata in girls soccer on Saturday.
Thea Trout netted the late winner on a follow-up shot after Arcata goalie Kyndle Eisner had saved a Soffia Reyes attempt.
The 1-0 loss was the first on the season for the defending league champs.
Del Norte and St Bernard’s also faced off in Crescent City, with the Crusaders coming away with a 2-0 win.
After the Panthers’ impressive win, McKinleyville head coach Adam Canepa praised the effort of his entire team.
“Everyone on my team played very hard and it was a well-deserved victory,” he said. “It was a very exciting game and it feels good to get the victory against Arcata.”
According to Arcata head coach Patrick Stranahan, Eisner made a great save on Reyes’ late attempt, before the opportunistic Trout jumped on the rebound to score the dramatic winner.
The Mack defense and goalkeeper Caitlyn Canepa also played a disciplined game, shutting out a dangerous Arcata attack.
The Eureka girls, meanwhile, continued to roll with a big win over the Huskies, with Saedra Joseph instrumental in the victory.
Joseph has been one of the most dangerous strikers in the H-DNL this season and has scored in all but one of the Loggers games.
Angelina Conant, Lorena Hernandez and Fiona Smart each also scored in the win, as the Loggers took over sole possession of first place in the Big 4.
Hernandez also had two assists, as did Maia Hales, while Kaitlin Giacone and Ella Tollefson each had one.
The midfield trio of Tollefson, Conant and Lila Ekholdt continued to set the tone and influence the direction of the game.
“They were instrumental in what we were trying to do today,” head coach Tommy Learmouth said.
The coach also praised the play of his defense, which posted a second straight shutout to start league.
Check out Summer Contreras’ brilliant goal for South Fork above …
“They were absolutely disciplined today and possessed the ball really well,” Learmouth said.
With the win, the Loggers improved to 2-0 in the Big 4, while Arcata and Mack are both 1-1 and Fortuna is now 0-2.
In the Little 4, meanwhile, South Fork rallied to tie the Wildcats with a wonderful goal from senior standout Summer Contreras.
It was a breakthrough result for the young Cubs, who found themselves trailing when Reaghan Langer gave the visitors the lead early in the second half.
“It’s hard to single anybody out,” South Fork coach Ann Constantino said. “This team, it was a single unit out there today. They grew up as a team today. It was wonderful to see.”
Freshman goalie Aurora Galaz made six saves and held arguably the most dangerous attack in the Little 4 to just one goal.
Junior Cloe McConnell also continued to impress and did a good job marking the dangerous Langer all afternoon, while Caidence Young had the assist on the goal.
The game was played in hot conditions in Miranda, and that suited the Cubs just fine.
“That’s kind of the ace up our sleeve some times,” Constantino said. “Because we’re used to that.”
Up in Crescent City, meanwhile, the St. Bernard’s girls scored a goal in either half on the way to shutting out the Warriors and improving to 2-0 in the Little 4.
Hannah Finck scored in the first half for the league leaders, with Bella Maki netting after the interval.
St. Bernard’s head coach Brian Finck described it as a well-played game by both teams.
Ferndale is 1-0-1 and second in the standings, with South Fork 0-1-1 and Del Norte 0-2.