Defense spurs Yellowjacket road victory
PEQUOT LAKES — Tyler Glines repeated a two-interception performance from last week and had the game-sealing touchdown reception from Nick Bahls in Perham’s 19-6 victory over the Pequot Lakes Patriots in Heart O’ Lakes-North Conference play Friday evening.
“Our offense has been a little spotty at times,” Glines said. “What we’ve been banking on all year is defense. We knew coming in that had to be our strong point and so far, that’s been the case.”
Perham committed 11 fumbles, but lost only two, after putting up two scores on early Patriot turnovers.
The Yellowjackets broke out to a 13-0 lead when Payton Jordahl cashed in from nine yards out on Perham’s second play of the game. Perham gained possession when Hayden Sturdevant recovered a C.J. Borleis fumble at the Patriot 26.
Brekden Kovar forced a fumble on the ensuing Patriot drive on a completed pass from Borleis to Conner Davich at the midfield stripe. CJ Mulcahy recovered the ball.
Nick Bahls scored on the first play from scrimmage, from the 50, to put Perham up 13-0, and give the Yellowjackets all the momentum after having scored touchdowns on two of three offensive plays by the eight-minute mark of the first quarter.
Both offenses made one trip to the end zone each the remainder of the game.
A very light rain fell periodically necessitating balls be wiped with towels on the sidelines.
As a team that has had recent troubles holding on to the football, the weather did little to aid the Yellowjackets. Gravity and luck, however, did, as the numerous fumbles that hit the soggy turf found Perham recoveries nine times out of 11.
Where the Yellowjackets have played consistently all season has been the defensive side of the ball.
That continued Friday with Perham holding Pequot Lakes to only 119 total yards and five first downs. The Patriots earned only one first down rushing as Cole Schmitz and the Jacket defenders forced Pequot Lakes to the air.
Schmitz had a game-high 14 tackles and Glines did more damage in the air than the Patriots.
Head Coach Mike Jordahl inserted Glines at corner two weeks ago specifically to defend the pass.
“I was hoping to make the best of my opportunities,” Glines said. “I guess it’s working out.”
Glines ended the fourth Patriot drive of the first quarter intercepting Borleis.
The Jackets also had seven tackles for loss pushing Patriot runners back 33 yards.
Pequot Lakes took advantage of a second quarter Glines’ fumble at the Perham 33 for their only score of the game. Borleis completed a pass to Alex Tangen on fourth down to keep the drive alive. Borleis hit Kyle Sellner alone in the end zone from 21 yards out cutting the score to 13-6 with 4:26 remaining in the first half.
Perham answered quickly when Bahls passed to Glines for a 50-yard score with 1:17 to play in the first half and killed much of the momentum gained by a struggling Patriots’ team having pulled within a score.
Glines caught the ball at the 25 and eluded two Patriot tacklers in a 10-yard sprint before trotting in from the 15 to put Perham up for good 19-6.
The second half was scoreless and both teams exchanged turnovers to get play started. Pequot recovered a Beachy fumble on their own 42 on Perham’s opening drive, but Glines made his second interception on Pequot’s first play from scrimmage giving Perham the ball back on their own 33.
Pequot did not threaten the red zone in the final 24 minutes. Perham ate up much of the fourth quarter on a long drive that stalled inside the five on fourth down leaving Pequot Lakes desperate for yards having to drive the entire length of the field with less than three minutes to go.
Payton Jordahl rushed for 112 yards and a touchdown. Austin Erickson had 57 yards on 10 carries. Bahls was part of a pair of 50-yard touchdowns - one rushing and one passing.
In the HOL-North, Detroit Lakes defeated East Grand Forks 28-6. Park Rapids beat Thief River Falls 34-7. Those wins create a three-way logjam in first place with DL, Park and Perham all 3-0. All three teams face each other in the final three weeks of the regular season. Detroit Lakes is 5-0 overall. Perham and Park Rapids are 4-1.
“We just have to do our best to stay focused and come ready to play those teams,” said Glines. “They’re going to be tough.”
Crookston fell to 1-4 overall after being shutout 29-0 by Breckenridge in a non-conference game.
PER 13 6 0 0 - 19
PEQ 0 6 0 0 - 6
1st 10:40 PER - Payton Jordahl 9 yd run (Nick Bahls kick)
2 plays, 26 yards, TOP 0:30, PER 7 - PEQ 0
07:53 PER - Nick Bahls 50 yd run (Nick Bahls kick failed)
1 play, 50 yards, TOP 0:12, PER 13 - PEQ 0
2nd 04:26 PEQ - Kyle Sellner 21 yd pass from C.J. Borleis (TEAM rush failed)
6 plays, 33 yards, TOP 2:55, PER 13 - PEQ 6
01:17 PER - Tyler Glines 50 yd pass from Nick Bahls (Nick Bahls kick failed)
6 plays, 79 yards, TOP 3:09, PER 19 - PEQ 6