Basketball teams take on Mack; wrestling travels to Anderson tourney
Basketball and wrestling are back in session for Del Norte High, even if school won’t be until Monday.
The Warriors square off against Humboldt-Del Norte Big 5 League opponent McKinleyville, with the girls’ games today in McKinleyville and the boys’ games Friday at Del Norte High School. Freshman games will begin at 4:30 p.m. both days, followed by the junior varsity teams at 6 p.m. and the varsity teams at 7:30 p.m.
The Del Norte boys face the Panthers with a 5-6 overall record to date and lingering questions as to the consistency of their play.
“We’ve got to get to where we build and get a little bit better each day,” Warriors coach Blaine Lopez said.
Del Norte traveled to Medford on Saturday as a fill-in opponent at the Abby’s Holiday Classic tournament, hosted by South Medford High School. The Warriors lost to Redmond (Ore.), 57-26.
“We just needed a game in there just so we didn’t have two and a half weeks without a game,” Lopez said. “We played so poorly that we didn’t really show up to play. The scary thing for me as a coach is that team is not any better than the teams we’re going to play in league. Our league is very good. There just aren’t any nights off.”
The Del Norte High girls have engineered a quick turnaround under first-year head coach Mike Ernest, going 8-5 in nonleague play after winning two games in the 2011-12 season. Against the Panthers, they hope to translate that success into HDN wins.
“I’m excited with the potential that we have,” Ernest said. “Just how they’ve grown from the beginning of the year — I’m excited how we’re gonna compete. I know we’re no secret anymore. I know teams have talked about us and (talked about) how we’re not a doormat anymore.
“I expect us to come out to McKinleyville and win this game. Whether they do it or not, I expect them to compete.”
The Del Norte High wrestling team also returns to action Friday, traveling to Anderson for the Northern California Wrestling Championships. Upwards of 30 schools are expected to attend the two-day tournament.