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Yellowjackets host EGF on Hall of Fame Night

Finding a way to stop the run will be pivotal for the Perham Yellowjacket football team when the East Grand Forks Green Wave come to town on Friday, Sept. 9 for Hall of Fame night at the Ted Meinhover Field.

"(We are) excited to play in front of the hometown fans again," Perham head coach Kyle Knutson said. "We get to induct some pretty decent people."

In their opening game loss to Hawley, the Yellowjackets allowed 291 yards rushing in a 33-32 loss to the Nuggets. The Yellowjacket defense struggled to get off the field when the Nuggets ran 20 more offensive plays than the Yellowjackets, 70-50, and controlled the clock for more than 31 minutes.

While the Yellowjacket defense struggled to slow down the Nugget offense, it was the same for the Hawley defense when it came to trying to slow down the Yellowjackets. The Yellowjackets rushed for 367 yards, averaging 8.7 yards per carry. It was a three headed rushing attack that led the way for the Yellowjackets. Knutson said having that attack makes them tougher to prepare for.

Zach Peterson finished with 117 yards on seven carries, while quarterback Jenson Beachy finished with 96 yards on 13 carries. Jack DeConcini finished with 71 yards on 13 carries, while finding the end zone three times on the ground. DeConcini added another receiving touchdown as well.

The Yellowjackets hope to continue that success when they face the Green Wave. The Green Wave are coming off a season opening win, 14-6, over the Crookston Pirates in East Grand Forks. The Green Wave attempted just two passes, while rushing for 218 yards on 49 carries. Nick Derrick rushed for a score as did Ethan Trebil, helping the Green Wave to the win.

Last year, the Green Wave capitalized on 10 Perham penalties and three turnovers in picking up a 34-26 victory over the Green Wave. In that game, Donnie Musgrove, Braden Shea, Trevor Selk, Cole Hammargren and Jordan Young all found the end zone. Fortunately for the Yellowjackets, those five guys are no longer part of the Green Wave.

Jordan Young led the team in rushing in that game, rushing for 189 yards and he is gone as well. Selk rushed for 84 yards, while passing for 145. While one Selk is gone, another is leading the team to the line. Dylan Selk takes over the helm at quarterback for the graduated Trevor Selk.

The new faces led the way for the Green Wave against Crookston with Trebil rushing for 91 yards, while Dylan Selk added 63.

The Yellowjackets will need to find a way to get some push against the Green Wave offensive line in slowing down the backfield duo for the Green Wave. Beachy led the Yellowjacket defense with 12 tackles, while Jonathan Staebler finished with 10 tackles. Evan Guck picked up the team's only sack. Reid Moser, Roo Schmitz and Zach Peterson finished with nine tackles as well for the Yellowjackets.

Knutson said they expect to see a lot of I-formation football from the Green Wave and one of the keys will be stopping their running attack. He added that stopping the run is a key, but continuing their success on the ground will be a key on offense. Another focus for the Yellowjackets will be limiting their penalties. Last year, they committed 10 against the Green Wave and were whistled for eight in their opener. Along with that, Knutson said the team will need to limit their turnovers as well.

The Yellowjackets and the Green Wave kick off at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 9 on Hall of Fame Night at the Ted Meinhover Field in Perham.

Jason Groth

 Groth is a Minnesota Newspaper Association award-winning Sports Editor of the Perham Focus and the Wadena Pioneer Journal. Groth worked in Grand Rapids as the Sports Director at KOZY/KMFY radio for two years and prior to that he was the Sports Editor/Writer for the Grand Rapids Herald-Review for seven years. 

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