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Jack Stigman pitched a complete game to lead Perham to a first round playoff victory over Breckenridge. Bob Williams/FOCUS

Baseball: Perham scores early and often in 8AA victory over Breckenridge

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PERHAM -- The Yellowjackets (18-3) kicked off Section 8AA baseball playoffs with a comfortable cruise in an 11-1 mercy rule shortened victory over Breckenridge (2-16) Tuesday.

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The Cowboys are a young team returning only one starter from last year's club and it showed against the seasoned Yellowjackets.

Breckenridge's lone senior Tyler Reiff led off the game for the Cowboys with a single and scored on a base hit by Jackson Amdahl to give Breckenridge its only lead of the game 1-0 after the first half-inning.

Gabe Pankonin strode to the plate and immediately erased the lead on the second pitch from Jack Hiedeman with a solo home run to left field.

Hiedeman had control issues walking three Jackets in an inning that saw Perham send all nine to the plate.

A crucial two-run error on a lazy fly ball off the bat of Mark Schumacher aided in the Cowboys' early demise and a 5-1 deficit after one inning.

Pankonin doubled to start the second and scored on a base hit by Eric Brauch.

Jesse Hein doubled. Brauch scored on a past ball, Hein moved to third. J.T. Laughlin singled to score Hein and the blowout was underway with Perham up 7-1.

Schumacher knocked in pinch runner Austin Erickson in the fourth to add the eighth run. Erickson ran for Ivan Nodsle who reached on a base on balls.

Brauch was 3-4 with two doubles and a single, one RBI. He scored three times. His only non-hit of the game was in the third inning when he reached first base on a fielder's choice.

Jesse Hein put a merciful end to the Cowboys' season in the fifth with a two-RBI single that scored Jack Stigman and Brauch.

Stigman kept the game lax and loose with a controlled performance on the mound. He allowed one earned run on three hits, walked four, and struck out five for the victory.

Hein was 2-3 with a two RBI. Pankonin was 2-4 with a HR, a double and one RBI.

The Cowboys used four pitchers in five innings trying to stay alive.

Sophomore Parker Busse took the hill in the fifth trying to keep the Cowboys in the game and left Perham with the unfortunate ERA of infinity for the game.

He faced three Jackets, walked Stigman -- gave up the double to Brauch and the game-winner to Hein.

Another statistical anomaly was Mark Schumacher recording the rare 9-3 putout when he gunned down Aaron Neppl from right field to Hein at first base to end the first inning.

The victory was the 16th consecutive win for Perham.

Top-seeded and No. 11(2A) ranked Perham will face Hawley (11-5) in Perham, Saturday, June 2 at 4 p.m.

Hawley eliminated a struggling Detroit Lakes team 13-2 to advance and have won five straight.

Yellowjacket results

Secton 8AA subsection playoffs. Breckenridge at Perham, Thursday, May 31.

BRE 100 00 - 1 3 2

PER 530 12 - 11 11 0

Breckenridge

AB R H Bi

Reiff 2 1 1 0

Busse 1 0 0 0

Amdahl 3 0 1 1

Hiedeman 3 0 0 0

Neppl 1 0 0 0

Pearson 2 0 1 0

Mohs 2 0 0 0

Hensch 2 0 0 0

Miller 1 0 0 0

Myhra 1 0 0 0

Totals 18 1 3 1

Perham

AB R H Bi

Pankonin 4 2 2 1

Stigman 2 1 1 0

x-Erickson 0 2 0 0

Brauch 4 3 3 1

Hein 3 2 2 2

Laughlin 3 0 1 1

Nodsle 1 0 0 0

Ruther 2 1 1 0

Schumacher 3 0 1 1

Haverland 3 0 0 0

Totals 24 11 11 6

Pitching (ip-h-r-er-bb-k): BRE - Hiedeman (LP) 1-2-5-3-3-0; Bommersbach 3-6-4-4-1-3; Neppl 0-0-0-0-0-0; Busse 0-2-2-2-1-0...PER: Stigman (WP) 5-3-1-1-4-5.

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Robert Williams
Robert has been the Sports Editor for the Focus since 2010 covering multiple state and national championship teams and is a mainstay at state tournaments each season covering the successful, athletic programs of Perham and New York Mills High Schools.
(218) 346-5900 x223
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