By Bill Choy
Triplicate Sports Editor
A magical season got even better for the Del Norte High softball team on Saturday, as the team dominated Fortuna to win two games and earn the Big 5 Conference title with one game to go.
On Wednesday, the Warriors end the season at home against McKinleyville. Currently, Del Norte has a two game lead over Eureka and Arcata. For the season, the Warriors are 19-3 overall and 9-2 in the conference. Saturday, Del Norte won handily 11-1 and 9-3.
"It was nice," head coach Jackie Heuberger said. "I'm just happy for them. They deserve it." She added the team came out relaxed and had fun during the two games.
"It feels great," sophomore Jennifer Gustafson said. "We're working well together and we have the same goals." She said the goals are working together, having fun and winning.
Heuberger said she is pleased to see the team enjoying the game, which she believes is a major reason for their success this season.
"If they're not having any fun out there what's the use of playing?" she said. "If you are out playing, you should have fun and love it."
Heuberger added she was pleased her team kept fielding errors, a problem at times this season, to a minimum. In the first game, the Warriors made three errors and none in the second game.
Winning the Big 5 championship means Del Norte will be in the Northcoast section playoffs, most likely hosting a game. Heuberger will travel to the Bay Area on Sunday to find out the team's seed and where they are playing.
The game is likely to take place on Tuesday or Wednesday.
In the second game Saturday, Lauryn Lesina blasted a grand slam.
"I was really excited," said Lesina, a freshman. She said it's nice to be on a team that works so well together, and she is looking forward to the playoffs.
"We should do good," she said.
In the first game on Saturday, Alyssa Bergquist pitched for the Warriors and had four strikeouts and gave up three hits.
Michelle Stacey went 2-for-4 with three RBI's, a triple and two runs, Paula Rhodes went 2-for-2 with a walk and two runs.
Lesina went 1-for 4 with a triple and three RBI's in the second game, she went 2-for 3 with a grand slam home run and six RBI's.
McKinnze Holden pitched the second game and struck out eight and gave up five hits. Gustafson went 3-for-4 with a double and one run. Tasheena Natt went 2-for-4 with a two RBI's, a double and a triple.