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PHS Volleyball: No. 7 seeded Perham to start 8AA playoffs in Breckenridge

Kelli Meehl gets low to the ground for one of her 12 digs at Detroit Lakes last week. Brian Basham/DL Tribune

John George

A pair of losses for the Perham volleyball team left them with an 11-11 record for the season. It also left them near the bottom of the Section 8AA tournament. But that may not be a bad thing for the Jackets.

Perham will be the No. 7 seed in the Section 8AA North playoffs. They begin their postseason with a first round match at No. 2 Breckenridge tonight (Oct. 29). The first set is scheduled for 7 p.m.

The Cowgirls (12-6-1) beat Perham on Oct. 6, 3-2 (18-25, 25-12, 14-25, 25-18, 15-10). Perham had been 9-0 over Breckenridge since 2000, not losing a single set, beating them by a combined score of 27-0 over that span.

The Lady Jackets finished the season with losses to Hawley (3-1) and Detroit Lakes (3-0). The two losses to fellow 8AA teams hurt in seeding.

"It's all based on points," Jacket head coach Dan Christenson said. "Had we won Tuesday and Thursday, we would have been a No. 3 seed."

Despite the losses to Breckenridge, and to potential second round opponents Detroit Lakes and Hawley, Christenson has confidence his team can make a postseason run.

"We couldn't be in a better spot in the bracket," Christenson said. "We wanted a No. 2 (seed), the No. 7 is the next best thing. Both of the first two rounds are teams that we've seen in the past three weeks."

DL streak ends

Perham's 15-match winning streak against one of their biggest rivals, Detroit Lakes, came to an end in the final match of the regular season. The Lakers ended the streak with a 3-0 victory (25-23, 25-20, 25-17).

The Lakers' last two victories have come against teams they have traditionally struggled against in Fergus Falls and Perham, but more importantly are section opponents.

DL (11-9) was on the bubble of gaining a top four seed for the playoffs, which would ensure a first-round home game. The ended up as the No. 3 seed. They will take on No. 6 Hawley in Thursday's first round.

But regardless, with the four-game winning streak the Lakers are on heading into the section tournament, they could be playing well above their seed ranking.

The Lakers had to contend with a pair of Moenkedick's -- Katrina and Elisa --on the front line, but DL employed a well-spread out net attack to keep the Yellowjackets at bay.

All three games were close up to the midway point, where the Lakers found a rally or two to separate them enough to move in for the victory and the eventual sweep.

The Lakers broke a 21-21 tie in game one, starting with an Ashlyn Jasken backrow kill, followed by a Perham out of bounds hit. A lift violation gave DL the game-point serve, but the Yellowjackets made a late push, before falling 25-23.

Game two saw the Lakers sprint out to a 17-12 lead, before winning 25-20.

The Lakers broke a 17-17 tie in the decisive game three, with Mackenzie Gedrose serving seven straight points for the 25-17 victory.

Katrina Moenkedick finished with 11 kills, while Elisa finished with 12.

(Brian Wierima from DL Newspapers contributed to this story. DL Newspapers and EOT Illustrated are both owned by Forum Communications.)

Thursday, October 22

Detroit Lakes 3, Perham 0

(25-23, 25-20, 25-17)

Jackets--(Kills-Digs-Blocks)--Mary Guck (1-4-0), Kaylan Huber (1-15-0), Becky Stoll (0-6-1), Katrina Moenkedick (11-9-1), Brooke Mickelson (0-11-0), Kelli Meehl (3-12-1), Elisa Moenkedick (12-12-2), Lexy Karvonen (0-0-1).

Assists--Guck 23, Rayna Jacobson 3.

Aces--Guck 2, K. Moenkedick 2, Stoll 1, Meehl 1.

Heart O' Lakes (Final) Conf. All

D-G-F 10-0 15-8

Breckenridge 8-1 12-6

Perham 6-3 11-11

Hawley 6-5 9-6

Lake Park-Audubon 5-5 9-9

Pelican Rapids 5-5 9-8

West Central Area 4-5 6-15

Barnesville 4-7 6-13

Frazee 0-8 1-17

Ulen-Hitterdal 0-9 0-21