The Del Norte girls tennis team rolled to a 7-0 victory over a shorthanded St. Bernard’s team in Eureka on Saturday.
The Crusaders had several players missing from Saturday’s contest for various reasons, so Del Norte only brought four girls down to Eureka for the match.
Senior Baliee Drown dominated the No. 1 singles match with a 6-0, 6-0 victory. Del Norte’s regular No. 3 singles player, Castley Thao, moved up to the No. 2 spot and picked up an easy 6-0, 6-1 victory.
Del Norte’s No. 4 and No. 5 singles players — Diana Loban and Danika Scott — teamed up against St. Bernard’s in the only doubles match of the day and came through for a 6-0, 6-0 victory.
“It was good for us because one, it got the kids in a competitive match, and two it gave some kids the day off,” said Del Norte head coach Samuel Escobar. “That was also helpful because some of the girls were getting a little sick. It was just an easygoing outting for the kids.”
The meet against St. Bernard’s was Del Norte’s first full meet of the season, against Fortuna and Ferndale, after its opener was postponed halfway through the singles matches due to poor air quality. The makeup date for that match has not yet been scheduled.
The Warriors are scheduled to be back on the road in Humboldt County today taking on McKinleyville. The Panthers showed their team strength right off the bat this year, knocking off preseason favorite Arcata 6-3 in their first meet of the year.
“We have McKinleyville coming up (today), and that will be a big match for us. McKinleyville has a No. 1 from last year that beat our former No. 1 Raili (Makela) twice last year,” Escobar said. “Their No. 2 player was probably the best No. 1 in the league last year too. Those two make up their No. 1 doubles team and they are probably the best doubles team in the county. So they will be extremely tough.”
Escobar said Del Norte’s biggest advantage in the match will likely be its depth. Although the top Warrior players may struggle to win their matches, Escobar likes the chances of some of the lower seeded players.
“It will be a tough match. I think in order for us to get a win it will come down to our three, four and five singles matches and our No. 2 and No. 3 doubles teams,” Escobar said. “We aren’t giving No. 1 and No. 2 away, but it is going to be tough. I think it is going to be a good test for us.”
The meet is scheduled to start at 4 p.m.