Robert Husseman, The Triplicate

Second-half scoring run sparks Mack

The Del Norte High boys basketball team has now dropped six of its last seven games, the latest loss a 65-53 decision at McKinleyville High on Thursday night.

Nonetheless, progress has been made. After a listless effort in a home loss to Ferndale on Tuesday, the Warriors bounced back with a stronger effort against the Panthers.

"I thought the kids played hard," Del Norte head coach Blaine Lopez said. "I thought in particular our bench did a good job especially early in the game, giving us a spark. Especially in the first half."

Compared to the Warriors' first contest against McKinleyville, a 57-36 home loss on Jan.5, "we handled some things a little bit better, but we were also playing at their place," Lopez said. "They shot the ball a little bit better and made some difficult shots."

The Warriors (6-11 overall, 1-4 Humboldt-Del Norte Big 5 League) withstood a furious second quarter by the Panthers (14-7 overall, 3-2 HDN Big 5) and faced a four-point deficit out of the halftime locker room.

McKinleyville held a 41-39 lead with three minutes remaining in the third quarter before running out to a 15-0 run stretching into the fourth quarter, leaving Del Norte behind.

"We turned the ball over and missed a couple shots," Lopez said. "The teams in the league are pretty good. When we make mistakes, they've been magnified."

Sean DeArman led Del Norte with 10 points on the night, and Jesus Herrera set a career high with eight points as the Warriors' second-leading scorer.

The Warriors now stand in fourth place in the HDN Big 5 League. Arcata and Fortuna have identical conference records of 4-1 overall and are tied for first place. The Panthers are third at 3-2 overall and Eureka is in fifth place with an 0-4 record as of Friday.

Del Norte hosts the Loggers on Tuesday night for its next game. Freshman play will begin at 4:30 p.m., followed by the junior varsity at 6 p.m. and the varsity at 7:30 p.m.

Reach Robert Husseman at