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Perham grapplers win home finale against Detroit Lakes

Perham's Matthew Bush ties up Detroit Lake's Garrett Nelson and gets ready to turn him on his shoulders. Bush earned the fall win for Perham at 152. Jason Groth/FOCUS1 / 2
Perham's Zach Peterson gets the pin on Detroit Lakes' Noah Olds at 182 pounds. Jason Groth/FOCUS2 / 2

The fifth-ranked Perham Yellowjackets ended an era with a 49-12 victory over the Detroit Lakes Lakers on Jan. 18 at the Prairie Wind Middle School gymnasium.

It was fitting that the final wrestling dual in the gymnasium came against Section 8AA foe, Detroit Lakes. The two teams battled in last year’s section championship and are expected to run into each other again in the section playoffs.

“It’s good to see them. They are obviously a good team and we need to see that from a section standpoint and the standpoint of having a good home dual,” Perham head coach Robb Moser said. “It was a great crowd and I thought it was a lot of fun. Everyone was looking forward to this match and I have a feeling we are going to see them somewhere down the line. They are a good team here and the score probably isn’t really indicative of what it would be on a normal night. It was fun. It’s cool that we could wrestle a section team. It was our last home dual and maybe our last home dual in this gymnasium. It was a neat night for our kids”

The Lakers were without a pair of key wrestlers in the form of Fabyon Greer and Braydon Ortloff. Ortloff is currently the second-ranked wrestler in the state at 152.

While the Lakers were missing two key members, a key member to the Yellowjackets returned to the line up in Leighton Rach. Rach, who was out with a leg injury, returned in a big way, earning a 13-6 victory over Payton Jackson at 132.

Leighton Rach

His return helps solidify a solid lineup across the board and gives the Yellowjackets some options. Moser said it allows the team to be more steady through the middle. He said the kids were happy to see him back and that he was proud of him to come back from the injury. He said there are several elements to overcome, returning from an injury, such as the physical, emotional and mental elements. Moser said his return is a big win for the whole team.

“Not only was he (Rach) back in the lineup, he wrestled a really tough kid and he had a real convincing win that gave all of our kids a shot in the arm,” Moser said. “That really tightens us up in the middle. You throw a state placewinner back on this team and, I think, it makes us look pretty salty by the end of the year.”

Owen Werner moved down to 106 and was dynamic in his first match at that weight. He cruised to a 17-0 technical fall victory over Cade Jackson. Dylan Johnson bumped up to 113 and held off a surging Brody Ullyott in the third period, earning a 6-5 decision.

Owen Werner

Gabe Bellefeuille went down to 120 and earned a 14-4 major decision win over Blaine Henderson. Moser said he looked more offensive than they have seen in the past with him, now at 120.

Matthew Bush earned a fall win over Garrett Nelson at 152, winning the match at the three minute and nine second mark.

Dawson Kellogg earned a key win at 170, picking up a takedown of Isaiah Thompson in overtime, earning the 3-1 decision win.

Zach Peterson made quick work of Noah Olds at 182, earning a fall win at the 53 second mark. Ty Moser followed with a major decision win over Jordan Skadsem, 19-5. Jose Lopez picked up a decision win over Andres Annette at 220, for the final Perham win. Jake Fudge and Dylan Fudge both earned forfeit wins at 138 and 145.

Blake Weber earned a win for Detroit Lakes at 126 when he pinned Gareth Covington. Austin Baker defeated Wyatt Guck in a high-octane match at 160. Baker was able to get the edge late in the third period, earning a 17-16 decision win. Charles Barnett closed out the dual with a 7-1 decision win over Colton Kostynick at 285.

“For a wrestling fan, there were a lot of good matches in there. It just so happened that many of them went our way,” Moser said.

The Yellowjackets are now 20-1 in dual meets and return to action with a triangular in Melrose on Tuesday. The Yellowjackets have a dual with Ottertail Central on Thursday as well before the Mid-State/Heart O’Lakes Conference Tournament on Saturday, Jan. 27

Ty Moser

Perham 49, Detroit Lakes 12

106: Owen Werner (PER) def. Cade Jackson (DL) (Tech Fall 17-0)

113: Dylan Johnson (PER) def. Brody Ullyott (DL) (Dec. 6-5)

120: Gabe Bellefeuille (PER) def. Blaine Henderson (DL) (Maj. Dec. 14-4)

126: Blake Weber (DL) def. Gareth Covington (PER) (Fall 1:48)

132: Leighton Rach (PER) def. Payton Jackson (DL) (Dec. 13-6)

138: Jack Fudge (PER) wins by forfeit

145: Dylan Fudge (PER) wins by forfeit

152: Matthew Bush (PER) def. Garrett Nelson (DL) (Fall 3:09)

160: Austin Baker (DL) def. Wyatt Guck (PER) (Dec. 17-16)

170: Dawson Kellogg (PER) def. Isaiah Thompson (DL) (Dec. 3-1 OT)

182: Zach Peterson (PER) def. Noah Olds (DL) (Fall :53)

195: Ty Moser (PER) def. Jordan Skadsem (DL) (Maj. Dec. 19-5)

220: Jose Lopez (PER) def. Andres Annette (DL) (Dec. 4-2)

285: Charles Barnett (DL) def. Colton Kostynick (PER) (Dec. 7-1)

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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