Robert has been the Sports Editor for the Focus since 2010 covering multiple state and national championship teams and is a mainstay at state tournaments each season covering the successful, athletic programs of Perham and New York Mills High Schools.
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The Perham-New York Mills 200-yard medley relay team finished 20th in preliminaries at the Minnesota State Class A Swimming and Diving meet, after qualifying for the state meet at sections with a school record time of 1:55.29. The foursome of Kesley Kratzke, Bailey Meyer, Sam Salathe and Natalie Murphy swam a combined time of 1:57.33 in the first event of the state swimming meet Friday. The finish was the best out of the section as the top two teams from Park Rapids and Fergus Falls were disqualified from Friday's preliminaries.
In her final swim at the Minnesota Class A State Swimming and Diving Championships, Perham/New York Mills senior Kelsey Kratzke finished 16th in the 100-breaststroke at the University Aquatic Center in Minneapolis at the University of Minnesota. The trip to the state meet was Kratzke's third. Kratzke qualified in the preliminaries Friday in 15th place with a time of 1:09.72.
Jordan Hein was credited with one of Forum Communications' owned WDAY Sports runs of the week. Josh Still also made the clip taking one of the hits of the week. See the action on the link provided. The Perham highlights are at the 30:17 mark.
Individuals from the Perham-New York Mills girls swimming team are the third squad from the area to make an appearance at the state level. Kelsey Kratzke returns to the University of Minnesota's Aquatics Center for the third time. Kratzke qualified in the 100-breastroke. Her time of 1:09.14 was third best at sections, where only the top two qualify, unless the swimmer finishes under the state qualifying time of 1:10.78. Her time was one of 14 school records broken at the Section 8A meet. At the state meet in this event, Junior Kathryn Ostrom, of St.
There is no huge secret in how to stop the Providence Academy Lions' offense. The Lions rely heavily on senior halfback Marshall Klitzke. Klitzke has scored eight touchdowns in three section playoff games, including a Herculean effort of 378 yards on 31 carries and five touchdowns in the Lions' 55-20 trouncing of Breck in week two of the playoffs. Klitzke did not rush for 1,000 yards in the regular season.
It was the end of week six of the football season and a fellow employee, who shall not be named, (Deb Spiczka) asked me what I thought the chances were Perham would defeat Thief River Falls. I did not reply in the affirmative. In fact, I proclaimed a loss. Deb agreed with me. The Yellowjackets were 2-3 and had been the victim of bad luck, bad timing and on the field their play was impressive at times, but not enough to seal victories consistently. Since our combined failure to predict that game correctly, the Yellowjackets have not lost a game. At first, Deb and I felt shame.
NORTHFIELD -- Cassie Beseman, in her final race as a Yellowjacket, led Perham, as she has all season, to a 10th place finish at the Class A State Cross Country Meet, Saturday, Nov. 5, in Northfield. "It's bittersweet," Beseman said. "We ran well together, as a team." The girls team improves on a 12th place finish at last year's state meet and also finished in front of Park Rapids, a team that bested them for this year's Section 8A title in Bagley. Defeating Park Rapids was a motivating factor for Coach Morris, as he mentioned in post-race interviews.
NORTHFIELD -- St.
PLYMOUTH -- Much like Perham's Section 8AAA final victory, the #2-5AAA Providence Academy Lions (9-2) escaped a defensive battle, defeating the #5 Rockford Rockets (5-6) by a score of 15-14 to capture the Section 5AAA championship. The victory propels the Lions to the quarterfinal round of the state tournament, where they will face the Yellowjackets (8-3) Saturday, Nov. 12, at 5 p.m. at Husky Stadium on the campus of St.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- After averaging over 30 points per game in a five-game win streak leading to the Section final, the Perham Yellowjackets (8-3) only needed 10 to take the Section 8AAA title from defending champs Pequot Lakes, (7-4), by a final score of 10-3, at Alerus Center, in Grand Forks, Thursday evening. "Our kids stepped up and made big plays at the right time," Perham Defensive Coordinator Kyle Knutson said. "Our defense was amazing," Perham Head Coach Mike Jordahl said.