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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FERGUS FALLS -- The New York Mills Eagles baseball team, on the arms of freshman Brandon Kupfer and junior Adam Snelgrove, fresh off his no-hitter thrown Tuesday, combined to shut down the Frazee Hornets and take the Minnesota Section 6A championship by a score of 4-2. Snelgrove cleaned up the final two innings, allowing only two Hornets on base to garner the save after Kupfer threw five solid innings and 90 pitches, allowing two runs, one earned, striking out five. The duo did not allow a base on balls. "I was hoping and I wanted to pitch but I didn't know if I could," Snelgrove said.
Holly Karkela defended her Section championship shooting a 78 to capture medalist honors at Long Bow Golf Club, in Walker, Minn., to advance to the state tournament. "Holly played a fantastic round," Head Coach Cory Solberg said. "It was truly fun to watch. She will be joined, just like last season, by teammate Kaylan Huber, who qualified shooting an 84. "Kaylan played tough as nails," Solberg said.
Cassie Beseman and Miranda Lockhart will represent Perham at the state track meet, at Hamline University this coming weekend, after finishing runners-up in their respective events at the Section 6A Championship meet Thursday, June 2, at Minnesota State University-Moorhead. Beseman, fresh off a state tournament appearance with the cross-country team last fall, returns to the Twin Cities running for a title. Beseman led the Yellowjackets at the state cross-country meet just missing All-State honors by five seconds.
The Perham boys track team's season came to a close at the Section 6A Championship meet at Minnesota State University-Moorhead. Brady Speicher had the top finish for Perham placing third in the 3200m run, in a time of 10:29.70. Kyle Toms, of West Central Area won the event, 10:14.80. Jacob Gerhartz, of Sauk Centre was second, 10:15.40. Gerhartz's finish nipped Speicher from a trip to state. Billy Beseman was fourth, 10:45.10 and Brandon Karels finished 10th, 10:53.60. Andrew Riestenberg fell two places from qualifying in a fourth place finish in the 1600m run.
The New York Mills Eagles cruised to a 14-2 victory over Brandon-Evansville at the Section 6A semifinals in Fergus Falls Tuesday afternoon. Winds blustering near 30 mph at times mandated most hits be on the ground and the Eagles pounded out 17 knocking around both Charger pitchers in the bottom half of four innings. In the top half of the Chargers innings, Eagle starter Adam Snelgrove kept the Chargers at bay pitching the team's second no-hitter of the playoffs.
The rematch of last year's second round Section 8AA playoff matchup between Detroit Lakes and Perham ended similarly, with the Lakers knocking out the Yellowjackets 9-5. "It was a tough way to end a great season," Head Coach Hans Hanson said. "This year's team were such a wonderful bunch to coach and to be around on a daily basis. We had success and hopefully enjoyed a fun spring. I want to wish the seniors best of luck with their future challenges." DL is a good team that puts the ball in play and doesn't make many mistakes. We can't have that many walks in a game.
The New York Mills Eagles baseball team continued to ride hot pitching and solid defense moving on in Section 6A playoffs. They opened up a three-game set in New York Mills Thursday, June 2, with a decisive 5-0 blanking of Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale. Adam Snelgrove pitched a complete game three-hitter, walking three Raiders and striking out six.
It was a clean sweep for the Perham Yellowjackets girls golf team as they took home another Heart O' Lakes Conference championship Tuesday, at Wildflower Golf Course, in Detroit Lakes. The win comes as no surprise as the Yellowjackets dominated conference meets this season thanks to Holly Karkela, the conference's most valuable player, and Kaylan Huber, along with three Yellowjackets underclassmen, who made big leaps and improved throughout the season. The senior duo of Karkela and Huber led the conference in scoring average.
The Perham boys golf team got nipped by one stroke to take runner-up honors at the Heart O' Lakes Conference championship held at Wildflower Golf Course in Detroit Lakes. The Yellowjackets shot a combined score of 324, one putt from champion Hawley-Ulen-Hitterdal's 323. Dan Cavanagh continues his quest to return to the state championship meet. He was the low Yellowjacket shooting a 73, good for second place and one stroke behind Frazee's state champion Beau Hanson's 72. Evan Arvig took fifth place shooting a 78. Brett Syverson of Hawley-UH was third with a 74.
The New York Mills Eagles backed up their number one seed by hammering the ninth-seeded Eagle Valley Rebels 11-1, behind a no-hitter tossed by Tyler Patron. Patron faced two hitters over the minimum of 15 for the five innings of game time. He allowed no hits, no runs, struck out five batters, four looking and walked one. The base on balls and one fielding error kept his game from being perfect. He mowed down the Rebels in order three of five innings. Patron led the Eagles at the plate, as well.