Hein runs over Crookston, Jackets undefeated at 4-0
CROOKSTON - Jordan Hein's season-high 204 yards rushing led No. 4-3A Perham to a 26-14 victory over the Pirates.
Hein added two touchdowns and outran fellow senior, Crookston fullback, Josh Edlund, who a week ago tallied seven touchdowns against Park Rapids.
Edlund rushed for 171 yards and a score.
Wind and rain kept both offenses primarily on the ground.
Perham used seven rushers in the game, led by Hein's 25 attempts. Payton Jordahl rushed for 55 yards on 15 attempts.
"Jordan was once again a true leader on the field," Perham Head Coach Mike Jordahl said. "Most of the plays I called were giving him the ball and he was the first to recognize our blockers opening holes for him. All of the plays he called on the field were unselfish and were focused on the team, as you would figure from such a leader."
Payton Jordahl did much of his work in the fourth quarter. Up 26-14, with 8:40 remaining in the game, Perham killed the game clock and any chance of Crookston coming back late with an 18-play 80-yard drive that ate up seven minutes and four seconds on the game clock.
Jordahl rushed 11 times for 43 yards on the drive and Dan Ingebrand and Hein took care of the rest of the drive all on the ground.
Perham turned the ball over on downs at the Crookston 12 with under two minutes to go.
Forced to throw, Crookston returned the ball to Perham after three incomplete passes and a three-yard scramble to the Perham 15.
Hein kneeled down on the ball to allow time to expire.
"I think the guys felt like we had a good control of the game even though the score was close," Coach Jordahl said. "Our lineman did a great job along with our slots holding their blocks so our runners could move the ball down the field. As long as we were moving the ball we decided to keep the ball on the ground and it really paid off. We worked hard on conditioning, which really was the key on our time of possession and controlling the clock."
Crookston QB Dylan Klatt scored from 10 yards out in the first quarter to give the Pirates a 7-0 lead.
Perham answered with 13 points in the second quarter, on Hein's two touchdowns from 30 and seven yards to go to the break up 13-7.
On the opening coin flip, Crookston chose to take the wind, allowing Perham a shot at receiving both the opening kick and the second half kickoff.
The Pirates attempted an onside kick to open the second half giving Perham the ball at the midfield stripe.
Perham marched to the goal line in nine plays utilizing a number of rushers, Eli Beachy, Nick Bahls, Brandon Olson and Hein, culminating in a shifty six-yard touchdown run by Austin Erickson to go up a dozen 19-7 early in the third quarter.
Edlund answered three minutes later on a three-yard TD run to close within five, 19-14.
Payton Jordahl capped the scoring with a 12-yard TD run on the first play of the fourth quarter.
From there, the Perham defense shut the door on fourth and five, when Crookston was in the red zone at the eight-yard line.
Ingebrand and Luke Sailer got after Klatt forcing an incomplete pass on the fourth down play.
"Defensively, we made some big plays and found our groove," said Coach Jordahl. "Continuing to tackle better and shed blocks quickly will be our goals for practice this week as we get ready for the second half of the regular season."
Perham has used big plays and a shutdown defense to win games up to this point in the season, while questing for a complete game in all four quarters as they move into games that are going to be critical for a conference title, the section title and a return trip to state.
"We felt we played hard in all four quarters and were happy to cut our penalties down considerably, true signs of young men working hard physically and mentally."
Perham hosts their homecoming game this Friday and the Pequot Lakes Patriots (0-0, 1-3).
The Patriots have defeated Perham three straight years, but are down this year after graduating many of the players who led those victories.
Like Pelican Rapids and Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, who played Perham with streaks on the line, the Yellowjackets should end this next streak handily.
The following week, Perham travels to face Thief River Falls (0-0, 2-2), before a huge showdown with No. 6-4A Detroit Lakes (0-0, 4-0), in a game that should decide the HOL-North Conference title.
Detroit Lakes has allowed only 3.3 points per game through four games, including shutouts of Pequot Lakes and Staples-Motley.
The Lakers are also smarting from last season's Jordan Hein show, where Hein stole the game in Detroit lakes in an incredible display of his desire to win.
Hein scored five touchdowns, including a dramatic 92-yard fumble return for the game-winner.
DL running back Jarett Nosal had taken the handoff for six yards off of right end, but was stood up by Hein on the Perham six.
Instead of making the tackle, Hein stripped the ball from Nosal, twirled around and went unimpeded 92 yards for the touchdown.
Instead of having to face the Lakers from inside the 10-yard line up only one score 28-21, Perham led 35-21 -- in which they would need every one of those points in a 35-28 shootout victory.
Perham's main task will be to stay focused on their opponents the next fortnight before the game of the year Friday, Oct. 12 at Meinhover Field.