Just prior to our deadline, the Ferndale Lady Cats volleyball team earned their first home win of the season in the regular season finale. The Wildcats have been road Warriors this season and came to within just points of going unbeaten in league on the road. However, home games have been a different story. After sweeping to road wins over all three league foes to start the conference games, Ferndale came home to lose all three of their games to the very same opponents. The Cats were the only team in league to have a win over first-place South Fork halfway through the league schedule.
The second half of the league schedule saw more success on the road as once again the Cats beat St. Bernard's and South Fork in their own gyms. Ferndale came up just short up at Hoopa as their match went back and forth all the way to the 5th and final set, as the Warriors pulled out the win. So the season all came down to the final game of the regular season schedule this just past Tuesday night when the girls hosted the Crusaders. Win at home and the team would qualify for the North Coast Section volleyball postseason, lose the finale and call it a season!
The Ferndale home crowd got to see what has only transpired on the road previously, the Cats played excellent team ball and polished off the win by a 3-1 score in sets. The Lady Cats doubled up on St. Bernard's in set one by a score of 25-12. Ferndale then held off the Crusaders in set two 25-20. Set three saw a tight game slip away as the Cats started to revert back to their subpar efforts of prior home games and the set got away from them as St. Bernard's built momentum with a 25-17 win. Ferndale held firm and regained their edge with diving digs and powerful kills at net to pull out a 25-16 win for game, set and match.
Senior Kelsey Meyers had 3 aces, 14 assists and 28 digs, fellow senior Kaylee Armstrong had 17 digs from the back row. Anna Gomes hit 4 aces, 7 assists and 36 digs. Maci Branstetter hammered 12 kills, 2 blocks and 47 digs. Meagan Earley pounded 5 aces, 12 kills and 30 digs. Nicole Vollmer combined for 4 aces, 4 kills and 18 digs, while fellow junior Corabelle Esmaillian earned 5 aces, 2 kills and 7 digs. The team will find out where they sit in the postseason bracket after our deadline for this week.
Speaking of North Coast Section postseason, congratulations to the Fortuna boys and girls soccer teams and also the Lady Cats soccer for making the playoffs. It will be an uphill battle for the local teams as they, as lower seeds in the bracket, will be on the road this Wednesday afternoon, just after our deadline. The Fortuna boys were named No. 16 seeds in Division 1 and will travel to take on No. 1 seeded Maria Carrillo. If nothing else it will be the Husky defense that gives them a chance as the boys have kept some high powered offenses at bay this season.
The No. 10 Fortuna Lady Huskies will be at No. 7 seeded Rancho Cotate, also on the road this just past Oct. 31. The Ferndale Wildcats girls soccer team will compete in Division III were they earned a No. 12 seed. The Lady Cats will travel to No. 5 Clear Lake for their small schools showdown. The Arcata Tigers earned a No. 8 seed and are also in Division I with the Huskies, the South Fork Cubs earned a No. 11 seed in Division III and will be on the road at Calistoga.
There are other positive results in some of the other sports as the fall sports regular season is wrapping up and individual as well as teams earn H-DN as well as NCS honors. Hope to have more on that in coming weeks.
Photo by Mark Lourenzo/Beacon
Fortuna High No. 1 singles tennis player Angie Gearhart just won the H-DN Championship last week at the Eureka Indoor Tennis Courts and will be going to the North Coast Section Meet at Golden Gate Park Tennis Facility in San Francisco on Nov. 13 and 14. Gearhart sailed through the HDN bracket and in the finals bested Eureka's Mary Fisher in straight sets, 6-2, 6-2.