By Ray Hamill — As expected, a pair of conference championships will be decide on the final weekend of the regular season.
With victories last week for Del Norte, Fortuna, Hoopa and Ferndale, all four schools go into the final night of action with their championships ambitions still on track.
The Hoopa Warriors, who have won seven straight games, clinched at least a share of the Little 4 title with a comfortable 42-8 victory at McKinleyville on Friday night, but the the Ferndale Wildcats kept their championship hopes alive with a 45-0 victory over Arcata in the Cream City the following afternoon.
If the Warriors win in front of a home crowd, they will be crowned outright champs, but if the Cats win then the two schools will share the championship.
Hoopa is now 5-0 in the Little 4 and 7-2 on the season and the Warriors have won all seven of their games since dropping back-to-back games to start the season.
Ferndale is 4-1 in the Little 4 and 7-2 overall, with the Wildcats’ only conference loss coming against Hoopa three weeks ago.
Friday’s showdown will be the third of the season between the two league rivals, with Ferndale taking the first meeting 20-6 and Hoopa winning the earlier Little 4 matchup 22-6.
In the Big 4, meanwhile, Fortuna and Del Norte are both 2-0 in conference heading into what will be a true championship between the two teams at Husky Field on Friday night.
The victory was the fifth straight for the Warriors, who are 6-1 overall, while the Huskies are now 7-2 and have won four straight games.
The Huskies had to rally at Eureka to keep their winning streak going.
Trailing 22-20 early in the third quarter, the Huskies re-took the lead when Kye-lee Hawthorne returned a kickoff 75 yards for a touchdown.
Mako Limon added a 31-yard touchdown to close out the scoring.
The impressive Limon rushed for 151 yards on 17 carries and scored three touchdowns, giving him 1,100 yards rushing and 19 touchdowns on the year.
Kavi Bolden added 23 yards rushing and scored his 11th touchdown of the season, and the two running backs have now combined for almost 1,700 yards rushing and 30 rushing touchdowns this season.
Their offensive line — sophomores Logan Hoppis and Casey Moore, and freshmen Aaron Thurston, Mikhail Pitzer, and Jonah Davidson — has played a huge part in that success.
Also this weekend, McKinelyville will host Arcata on Friday night and Eureka will travel to play crosstown rival St. Bernard’s on Saturday afternoon.
After being shut out in four of their first five games, the Mack JVs have found some life late in the season and have scored 80 points over the past three weeks.