NCS SOCCER — Could home-field advantage sway one big tie?

Ray Hamill/ – The Arcata boys will host Making Waves in the Division-1 NCS semifinal on Wednesday.

By Ray Hamill — Wednesday will be a busy one for H-DNL teams in the North Coast Section soccer playoffs, with six local teams involved in four semifinals.

Three of those four semis will be played here on the North Coast, including both in the girls Division-I bracket.

The action gets under way at 2:30 p.m. with a pair of afternoon showdowns in Northern Humboldt.

The No. 3 seeded Arcata girls will host No. 7 Fortuna at McKinleyville High, while in the boys bracket, No. 2 Arcata will host No. 3 Making Waves on the new Tigers field.

Interestingly, the Arcata boys have chosen to host on their own field despite the muddy surface, and that could play into their favor against the defending section champions, who are not used to playing on those conditions.

It didn’t seem to slow the Arcata Tigers too much in their playoff-opening 5-2 win over Lower Lake on Saturday.

The Marlins, meanwhile, are coming off a 3-1 win over Middletown in their quarterfinal and are now 15-2-2 on the season.

Also in the boys bracket, the Fortuna Huskies will try to upset the odds on the road for a second straight week, this time at top-seeded Head-Royce in Oakland in the afternoon.

The No. 5 Huskies appear to be getting stronger as the season progresses and are fresh off an impressive 4-1 win at Eureka in their playoff opener.

The local action closes out on Wednesday night when the No. 1 Eureka girls host the No. 5 McKinleyville Panthers at 7 p.m.

The high-flying Loggers are unbeaten on the year and favorites to win a second straight section crown with a record of 13-0-2.

However, the Panthers are one of the teams that pushed the Loggers close and the only team to score twice against them all season long, so they won’t lack confidence.

In the other girls semifinal, Fortuna and Arcata will be playing for the fourth time this season.

The Tigers have won two of the three previous games, with the other ending in a 1-1 tie.

NCS History

Three of the six local teams have previously won an NCS title, while the other three are looking for their first.

The Fortuna boys are three-time winners, having won in 2016, 2018, 2019, while the Eureka girls have won twice (in 2018 and 2021) and the Fortuna girls once (2017).

2 replies »

  1. To play the game of soccer is to play on various types of “field conditions”…

    …to be the athlete, team, organization, fan, etc… that wimpers about weather conditions, turf being wet, etc… only means that the wimperers are not real soccer players, coaches, fans or organizations… and should not even be involved in the sport because they do not have the correct tenets for the game.

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