ATHLETES AND TEAM OF THE WEEK — League champs lead the way

Photos by Ray Hamill/ – Lili Nunez

By Ray Hamill — It was another big week in local sports with multiple teams crowned league champions and three individuals in particular who helped them secure those titles.

Up in Crescent City, the Del Norte Warriors capped a memorable regular season with their eighth win in eight Big 5 games on the volleyball court on Thursday, on a night when the Warriors honored an outstanding senior class.

Tow of those seniors in particular — McKenna Curtis and Lili Nunez — have led the way for their team this year and that earns them the nod as two of our athletes of the week, an award sponsored as always by College of the Redwoods Athletics.

Curtis is the reigning league MVP and a frontrunner to win the the award again this fall, while the very talented Nunez is a star in three sports for the Warriors and has been a Humboldt Sports Athlete of the Week before.

Both senior standouts will now turn their attention to the North Coast Section playoffs, which begin next week.

Joining them as one of our athletes of the week is an Arcata junior who is coming off a very impressive season in H-DNL girls golf.

On Tuesday, Madyson Nelson clinched the league title with her fourth win in seven rounds of league competition at the Baywood Golf and Country Club.

Nelson came into the day well on course to win the championship and didn’t disappoint, shooting a 101 to comfortably beat the field and cruise to the league win.

Rounding out our weekly awards, our Team of the Week goes to the Hoopa JV football team.

The young Warriors are the hottest JV team in the H-DNL and took a big step toward a Little 4 championship with a victory at Ferndale on Saturday.

The Warriors have won five straight games since dropping their first two and they are unbeaten in league play halfway through the schedule.


McKenna Curtis

Del Norte Volleyball, Senior

Curtis has dominated in the Big 5 for the past two seasons, while earning the respect of opposing coaches and players.

Last year she was named league MVP and along with Nunez should be considered a frontrunner for the award again.

It helps to have multiple outstanding players around her on the court every game, but Curtis has risen to the challenge this year and is closing out her high school career in style.

For more on her big week, see League champs get set to celebrate stellar senior class …

Lili Nunez 

Del Norte Volleyball, Senior

Nunez has been equally effective for the Warriors and could very well have been named MVP a year ago.

She’s an incredibly talented all-around athlete who also excels in basketball and track and field, where she is one of the top high school javelin throwers in the state.

Like Curtis, Nunez is closing out her high school volleyball career in style.

For more on her big week, see Del Norte Warriors complete perfect league campaign …

Submitted photo – Madyson Nelson, second from left, celebrates her league title with her teammates.

Madyson Nelson

Arcata Girls Golf, Junior

What an impressive season it has been for the Arcata junior, who led the league standings wire-to-wire on the way to an H-DNL championship.

When the dust had settled, Nelson won league by a sizable 23 strokes and displayed tremendous consistency for most of the fall, shooing between 94 and 102 in five of seven league rounds.

For more on her big week, see Nelson, Tigers crowned champs after competitive H-DNL season …


Hoopa JVs Football

The future of Hoopa football is in good hands.

After beating the Wildcats 22-6 in Ferndale, the Warriors have taken over sole possession of top spot in the Little 4 standings and appear well on course for a league title.

Wins over Arcata and McKinleyville in the next two weeks will guarantee the young Warriors at least a share of the league title, and a second victory over the Wildcats on the final night of the season will likely give them the league championship outright.

Head coach Curtis Kane and his players have Hoopa football trending in the right direction.

For more on their big week, see Big wins for Hoopa, McKinleyville in the L4 …

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