Varsity Boys Lose to Hoopa

Roberto Navarrete goes up for the jump ball to open the game Friday night. [Photo by Janice Coffelt]

In a battle for second place in the Humboldt Del Norte Little Four Conference played last Friday at South Fork, the Cubs came up short against the Hoopa Warriors 79-59. “This game made me realize the difference between Division 6 teams and Division 5 teams,” said head coach Todd Vandenack who has just eight players on his Division 6 roster to Division 5 Hoopa’s twelve.

Hoopa subbed frequently, cycling fresh players onto the court throughout the game and the Cubs had several players who never sat down. South Fork kept the game close into the third quarter but could not keep up the defensive intensity needed to put a stop to Hoopa’s aggressive running game.

“You have to hand it to them,” said Vandenack of his opponent’s performance. “They took us off our game.”

Vandenack noted the Cubs made some minor mistakes but feels overall that the final score was not indicative of the intense competition throughout the game.

Justin Michael puts up a jumper in his last regular season appearance on his home court. [Photo by Janice Coffelt]

Sophomore CJ Van Meter led all Cubs scorers with 21, including a half-court buzzer-beater to pull the Cubs within 5 points at the intermission. Junior Roberto Navarrete had 15 points and was the team’s best rebounder on the night. Junior Scott Coffelt had 11 points and plowed through the Hoopa defense several times on coast to coast runs for lay-ups. Junior Ryder Pfau gave South Fork an early lead draining two 3-pointers early in the first quarter and finished with 7 total points.

The team’s only senior, Justin Michael, honored before the game in his final regular season home appearance, had 4 points. Sophomore Cooper Scott made a free throw.

Tuesday night the Cubs will travel back to Hoopa for the opening round of the Dick Niclai County Championship Tournament. If they win, they will play the Big Five Champion on Thursday. If they lose they will await news of their placement in the Division 6 North Coast Section Championship Tournament to open the following week.

Complicating matters for the Cubs is that two varsity starters were injured Friday night and are questionable for Tuesday night. Three JV players will be practicing and traveling with the team: sophomore Ayden Gallagher and freshmen Jayden Paine and Banyan Harding.

The Cubs finished 12-14 overall, 10-5 against fellow Division 6 schools, and 2-4 in league.



  • What about the stats and performance of the Hoopa Warriors. Seems like a little one-sided journalism to me. Or is it because of the continuing ignorant media coverage of Hoopa because they are reservation based.

  • Check with the Two Rivers Tribune who cover the Hoopa Warriors as well as their opponents. Use the stat sheets from the game, the same one you use for Southern Humboldt teams to identify the high scorers, their number and name and devote a little paragraph to them.

  • Congratulations to the Cubs and especially senior Justin Michael for their tenacity and hard work all season. Next year looks very promising.

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