Volleyball: Perham starts season with 3-0 sweep at Bemidji
BEMIDJI — Perham had dropped four consecutive season openers to Bemidji, but turned that streak around with an impressive 3-0 sweep on the road to start the 2013 campaign and in the process get first-year head coach Eryn Moser her first win Tuesday night.
"Last night was fun!" Moser said. "I told the girls that we were going to keep things in perspective. Our focus was to work hard, play strong, and play with optimism."
Many of this year's team members were part of last season when Perham was in a lot of close matches, but were unable to close out games. The opposite was in effect at Bemidji as the Yellowjackets won three close games by scores of 25-21, 25-23 and 26-24.
"I told them that winning now is a bonus, winning at the end of the season is what matters," said Moser.
Perham took advantage of 27 errors by a struggling Lumberjack team trying to replace their top four hitters from last season lost to graduation. The 2012 Lumberjacks made it to the Class 3A state tournament.
Bemidji committed 16 errors in game one and 13 in game two allowing Perham to push forward for victories. Game three tightened up and Bemidji was two points away from forcing a fourth game up 23-18.
"We did have a game plan and the girls did a great job of sticking to it. I thought last night's game was a great collaboration of six to eight girls doing what we told them to do."
Losing was not part of the plan as Perham rallied to take the third game outscoring the Jacks 8-1 down the stretch to clinch the sweep.
Strong serving was key to the win and Perham was led by Tina Schmitz, who was 11 for 11 with two aces. Allie Christenson went 15 for 15.
"All of our girls served amazing, going 73 for 76 serves with 6 aces."
Tina Scheidecker played outstanding on serve receive, having 17 passes to target. Maria Rutten led in kills with nine. Analea Erickson and Ella Von Ruden had four kills each. Tina Scheidecker had three kills. Erickson also made three key solo blocks during the match and Hope Sletteback and Allie Christenson led the team on the offensive side making good choices with sets and attacks.
Bemidji hits the road to Detroit Lakes Thursday Aug. 29. The Yellowjackets also will play the Lakers in their home opener Tuesday Sept. 3. Perham's road trip continues on Sept. 5 at Breckenridge and the Marshall tournament Friday, Sept. 6. Perham will host Barnesville Tuesday, Sept. 12 and should be a seasoned club by then after a tough road schedule to start the season.
Getting off to a hot start against a 3A school like Bemidji is a big boost in confidence for a talented group.
Perham 3, Bemidji 0 (25-21, 25-23, 26-24)