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Volleyball: Yellowjackets down Lakers, improve to 2-0

Analea Erickson blasts a kill past Detroit Lakes' Trisa Hutchinson in Perham's 3-1 home-opener Tuesday night. Photos by Robert Williams/FOCUS1 / 2
Maria Rutten finds some open court behind a Laker block in Perham's victory over the Lakers. Rutten led Perham with a dozen kills.2 / 2

PERHAM — The Yellowjackets have started the volleyball season with two wins over Class 3A opponents, but team eyes are down the road not on last night’s 3-1 victory over Detroit Lakes.

Head Coach Eryn Moser is sticking by her mantra from the opening match victory on the road at Bemidji.

“Winning at the beginning is a bonus to what we are trying to accomplish at the end of the season,” Moser said.

Perham showed signs of the team to come in both controlled and frenetic styles of play all over the court in the victory over Detroit Lakes.

Allie Christenson had 25 assists moving the ball to Maria Rutten (12 kills), Tina Scheidecker (nine kills) and Hope Sletteback (six kills). Rutten and Analea Erickson led on the defensive side with three and four blocks, respectively. Rutten also contributed 22 digs, along with Scheidecker’s team-high 25.

The opening set was all Lakers who led from a three-all tie to set points at 24-17. Perham did not go out quietly. Scheidecker kept the Jackets alive, followed by two kills from Christenson and two Laker errors to pull within two points down 24-22. DL’s Shay Nielsen ended the first set with a kill and a 25-22 Laker win.

From then on, Perham controlled play and the score winning out in three straight sets 25-11, 25-14, 25-21.

“Last night was up and down,” Moser said. “We had moments of greatness and then moments where we lost our edge. That will surely be our focus the next couple of matches - being able to stay focused and pushing ourselves to compete and stay consistent.”

Perham came out on fire in set two jumping out to a commanding 10-0 lead and finished with their largest advantage of the set 25-11.

Amy Scheidecker gave Perham an 9-2 lead in the third with consistent and well-placed serving that allowed Perham to pull away from and early tie at 2-2. Rutten got a big block to kill a lengthy rally and give Perham momentum up 19-13. DL managed only one more point as the Jackets went up two sets to one winning 25-14.

Detroit Lakes led set four to a tie at a dozen points each before Perham outscored the Lakers 13-9 down the stretch to avoid a tie-breaking fifth set.

“We need to continue to improve,” said Moser. “Our practices and games these next couple of weeks will focus on making improvements every time we step on the court, whether that is one or 10 percent. I have really tried to instill in my girls that our season is not determined by the wins at the beginning of the season, but the wins at the end of the season.”

Perham has an impressive 2-0 start to build on and will face even stiffer competition this weekend at the Marshall Invitational.

Robert Williams

Sports Editor at the Detroit Lakes Tribune. Williams worked prior as the Sports Editor in Perham for the Focus, a Forum Communications newspaper, from 2010-14. 

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