The Del Norte boys’ varsity basketball team knew they were going to be in for a battle, as the Warriors welcomed the Arcata Tigers into Thunen Gymnasium with sole possession of first place in the Big Five Conference standings on the line. Friday evening also marked a return to their home court for the first time since December 3.
In what was a tightly contested contest that lived up to its billing through the first three quarters, the Warriors ratcheted up the defensive intensity in the final eight minutes, ending the game on a 16-3 run and ultimately cruising to a 49-35 victory over the Tigers.
On a night that saw uncharacteristically cold nights from some, the Warriors were able to take full advantage of their depth, particularly on the perimeter, to both generate offense for themselves and stymie the Tigers on their own offensive end of the floor.
Damian Dowd led what was a balanced Warrior offensive attack with 10 points, many of those coming at the free throw line down the stretch. Despite being saddled by foul trouble throughout the evening, Anthony Slayton contributed nine points, while Kobe Mitchell and Kaleb Price added eight points each.
The Warriors hit the road again Wednesday when they travel to McKinleyville to take on the Panthers in hopes of closing out the first half of the conference season with an unblemished record.