By Ray Hamill — The Ferndale Wildcats took care of business against an extremely shorthanded McKinleyville team on Friday, running out to a comfortable 34-0 win at Mack High.
The Panthers had just 12 players on hand for the game and were down to 10 before halftime.
A scuffle early in the second quarter resulted in two players being ejected, one from each team, before an injury to senior Ayden Hillis left the home team with just 10 players.
The Wildcats scored touchdowns on each of their first five possessions of the game to open up an insurmountable 34-0 lead by halftime and improved to 3-1 in the Little 4 and 5-3 overall.
With Arcata winning 33-0 at Hoopa, the Wildcats remain second in the L4 standings, one win behind the Tigers, who are 4-0 (6-2 overall).
Senior Trent Titus ran in for three first-half touchdowns to give the visitors a 21-0 lead early in the second quarter.
Dayton Comer and Prescott Langer would each add short TD runs before halftime.
“We’ll try to get through it,” McKinleyville head coach Fel Barlow said. “It’ll make (the players) stronger.”
Next weekend, Ferndale hosts Arcata in a league-deciding showdown, while McKinleyville hosts Hoopa.
In JV action, Ferndale beat McKinleyville 32-20 to keep pressure on league leaders Hoopa.
The Panthers improved to 3-1 in the Little 4, one win behind unbeaten Hoopa, which is now 4-0 in league.