Times Standard (Eureka)
Tigers upset Crusaders in playoffs
Arcata advances to NCS semis vs. Branson
Arcata upsets St. Bernard’s
The Tigers pulled off a stunning road victory over the Crusaders, winning 53-50 in the NCS quarterfinals. Arcata will now face Branson in the semifinals on Wednesday.
The win over St. Bernard’s is certainly surprising. Arcata entered the section playoffs with a record barely above .500 at 12-11 and finished fourth in the Big 5 standings. Furthermore, the Tigers had lost 61-41 to the Crusaders in their only matchup of the regular season. But Arcata proved to be determined to avenge that loss on Saturday as they came away with the win.
The Tigers will now make the long trip south as they face Branson at the College of Marin. With a 17-11 record, Branson is not necessarily a heavy favorite over Arcata. But they’ve played a much tougher schedule and it will certainly be difficult for the Tigers to come away with the road win. Still, this deep playoff run is special for an Arcata team that has six seniors. They’ll try to keep the season alive with one more victory on Wednesday.
Panthers aim for upset of top-seed Piedmont
McKinleyville secured an impressive win on Saturday, going on the road to Crescent City and coming away with a 39-38 victory over Del Norte to advance to the semifinals of NCS Division IV playoffs. The Panthers will now face undefeated Piedmont on Wednesday.
With six seniors, McKinleyville’s postseason run is certainly a feel-good story as the team continues to progress through the postseason. But it will take nothing short of their best performance of the season for the team to have a chance
against Piedmont. The Highlanders are not only the top-seed in the tournament, but they are also ranked the 7th best team in California and the 22nd team nationally in the MaxPreps rankings.
If the Panthers pull off the unlikely win, there would be
a chance at a crosstown rivalry in the section playoffs. Arcata is facing Branson in the other semifinal game. The winners of these two matchups will face each other in the section championship game.
Top-seed Ferndale cruises into semifinals
After receiving a firstround bye, the Wildcats exhibited why they are the top seed in the NCS Division VI playoffs in their opening game against Tomales. Ferndale won 5236 to easily advance to the semifinals, where they will face Rio Lindo Adventist on Wednesday.
With a 19-7 record, the Wildcats will once again be heavy favorites in their home matchup against 17-6 Rio Lindo Adventist. But the Spartans will certainly pose a different level of challenge. If Ferndale can prevail, they’ll be well-prepared for the section finals.
On the other side of the bracket, Cornerstone Christian will play Mendocino for a spot in the title game. Cornerstone Christian would be expected to be heavy favorites after dominating Round Valley in an 85-17 victory in the semifinals.