Volleyball, soccer and more; Huskies and Wildcats find success and tough losses

Mark Lourenzo

Beacon Correspondent

The Fortuna Huskies and Ferndale Wildcats volleyball teams have recently experienced big wins on the road, but tough losses have tempered the jubilation for those teams. Both the Husky and Wildcat junior varsity teams have had their share of setbacks in close matches on the volleyball court as well. The Ferndale girls soccer team recently secured a satisfying win and though the Fortuna girls team got back to the win column, they are facing injuries to key players. Cross Country, girls tennis and high school golf continue the schedule with home meets coming soon. The youth football Eel River Valley Huskies return home this Sunday and take on Ferndale Youth Football and the Arcata teams in five games over the course of the day.

The Ferndale Lady Cats volleyball team missed out on a golden opportunity to seize first place in league this past Tuesday evening on their home court versus the St. Bernard's Crusaders. The girls were coming off thrilling road wins over league opponents Hoopa and South Fork recently. Both of those matches went 3 sets to 2 in favor of the Wildcats and put Ferndale in great shape for their home game against the Crusaders. However, the Lady Cats just came out flat, making uncharacteristic mistakes on their home court, and fell in straight sets to St. Bernard's. The final scores: 25-15, 25-17 and 25-22.

After losing sets one and two, the Cats came out and played to their potential in set three and built a 15-2 point lead. But they lost their momentum and St. Bernard's came storming back to take the final set. A frustrated Ferndale head coach Melissa Throssel will go back to the drawing board to figure out why the team played so poorly at home as a home game versus Hoopa looms today. The Ferndale JV team also lost in straight sets to the Crusaders 25-20 and 25-23. The junior varsity is still looking for their first win in league, though every time they take the court they are competitive.

The Fortuna Huskies varsity volleyball team earned their first league victory this week when they traveled to Crescent City and took on the Del Norte Warriors. After losing the opening set, the Huskies regained their composure and reeled off three straight to win 3-1. Scores of the sets read 18-25, 26-24, 25-20 and 25-20. The team is recouping after a bout of sickness affected several members during the past week. That issue was evident when the Huskies hosted McKinleyville last week. On a night honoring long time Fortuna Husky supporter Shirley Johnson, the depleted Huskies lost game one 25-16 and saw front line hitter Courtney Christiansen fall hard to the floor with an injury. Fortuna responded with a inspired effort in set two as the teams battled back and forth until the Huskies pulled out an incredible 35-33 set win.

Unfortunately the energy levels could not be maintained and Fortuna lost sets 3 and 4 ending the evening match. Huskies Taylor Barnhart had 15 kills and Nicole Johnson had 8 kills in the losing effort. The Fortuna junior varsity lost to the Panthers by 2-1 set score. The win up at Del Norte improved the varsity team to 1-2 in league and chances of another win are looking good as all the girls on the roster get back up to speed.

The Ferndale Lady Cats soccer team earned a satisfying victory at Del Norte last Friday. Wins have been hard to come by for this young team however first half goals by Katrina Senestraro, Alejandra and Emma Gomes gave the Cats a commanding lead and a 2nd half goal by the Warriors did not change the outcome, Cats win 3-1. It is the 2nd local win for the team as they won 5-0 over St. Bernard's back in September. This past Saturday Ferndale visited Fortuna for the second time this season and were on the short end of a 3-0 score. Still a improvement over the last time they faced the strong Husky team.

Speaking of the Fortuna Huskies girls soccer team, they are back to their winning ways after the tough loss against the Arcata Tigers. Since then they topped St. Bernard's 9-0 and Ferndale by the 3-0 score. On the negative side, a couple of injuries are hurting the team's chances for the latter half of the schedule. First Devan Nielsen went down with an injury and most recently Mackenzie Rice was found to have a broken bone in her foot. Rice tried to play through the pain until the severity of the injury was diagnosed and she had to call it a season. The team still has some weapons to their disposal for the rest of the season. We will try to catch up to some of the other sports in the next couple of weeks as the fall season starts to wind down.

Photos by Mark Lourenzo/Beacon

1. Ferndale's Meagan Earley goes up for a kill attempt in a recent home match versus the Arcata Tigers. Earley and the Lady Cats have stepped up their game as of late and earned road wins at Hoopa and South Fork by 3-2 scores in sets.

2. Fortuna High tennis player Angela Gearhart eyes a volley at the net in a recent home match as the Huskies took on the Eureka Loggers on Oct. 2.