PERHAM — The Perham girls basketball team (3-1) made it three wins in a row with a convincing 63-49 victory over New York Mills (0-1).
The Yellowjackets looked crisp on offense and managed to defend against a height disadvantage facing the Eagles’ Lydia and Ellie Rutten. Ellie Rutten led all scorers with 19 points before fouling out with 4:10 to play. Lydia Rutten scored 13 points.
Perham’s guards Brittany Miller and Josie Beachy joined Maria Rutten atop the Yellowjacket scoresheet. Miller scored a team high 16 points, Rutten scored 14 and freshman Beachy put in 12. Beachy and Miller did much of their work from behind the arc but both players were key in moving the ball around.
Perham did that better than they have all season and Monday night’s victory gives the Yellowjackets one more win than all of last season. Smiles on players’ faces highlighted a win that marks a significant turnaround in Perham girls basketball.
“It was a lot of fun,” Miller said. “I don’t know if I’ve ever had so much fun playing the game. We just clicked. It’s just amazing to me that we already broke our record from last year in four games.”
Maria Rutten pulled down nine rebounds, one shy of recording a double-double. Ella Von Ruden led Perham with 16 boards. Eight Yellowjackets scored in the game.
Perham led 30-29 at halftime ending 18 minutes of streaks, a lot of fouls and lead changes up to a tie at 20-all. Perham held the Eagles at bay to the break and busted out of the locker room on a 8-0 run to start the second half.
The Yellowjackets built their largest lead of the game of 16 points with Ellie Rutten on the bench late 58-42 on a pair of free throws by Maria Rutten.
Miller did most of her scoring in the second half with 10 points, six of which came from behind the arc. Miller was five of nine from the field and four of six at the line.
Maria Rutten was 3-9 shooting but got to the line nine times sinking eight freebies.
The victory avenged a loss to NY Mills last season in Mills. The Eagles won that game 49-47.
“We kind of were hung up on how we played last year so it was nice to finally beat them,” said Miller.
The win was the first for assistant coach Kyle Van Dyke, who filled in for head coach TJ Super. Super missed the game expecting his first child to be born Monday night.
Perham will try for four in a row Thursday night at Barnesville (2-0). NY Mills will aim for their first win of the season Tuesday, Dec. 10 at home versus Menahga.
NYM 29 20 — 49
PER 30 33 — 63
NYM: Ellie Rutten 19, Lydia Rutten 13, Lydia Irons 9, Tori Kempenich 4, McKenna Roberts 4.
PER: Brittany Miller 16, Maria Rutten 14, Josie Beachy 12, Tina Scheidecker 8, Analea Erickson 6, Sydney Roberts 3, Ella Von Ruden 2, Amy Scheidecker 2.