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 varsity volleyball team has put up tough battles seeking their first win of the season in New York Mills. Their paths crossed Pelican Rapids at home and road trips to Verndale and Pillager but a win was not to be found. Pelican took all three sets 25-13, 25-17 and 25-15 in a sweep at the NY Mills gymnasium. Megan Cole led the Eagles with six kills while Taylor Plautz had seven blocks. The Eagles took game two at Verndale 26-24 after a rough 25-4 opening set. Verndale would gain the victory with a 25-13 set three win and needing extra points to seal the match 28-26 in set four.
The New York Mills tennis team wound up regular season play at home in a 5-2 loss to Detroit Lakes. The Eagles got wins from Lauren Bach and Missy Hendricks in one-singles. The pair defeated Tess Hamre and Brianna Seebold one and four. Jen Maki and Krista Guldseth took their number two doubles match one and one over DL's India Fritz and Emily Seebold. "Our first two doubles teams played very well in picking up our team points," said Head Coach Gary Bach.
The Eagles remained winless in Prairie North Conference standings after a comeback from an 18-0 deficit fell short Friday night. The Panthers hung on to prevail 18-13, but not before withstanding a fourth-quarter flurry from NY Mills. "I was happy with the way we came back in the fourth quarter," said Head Coach Matt Radniecki. "We didn't give up and lay down but we kept fighting and working hard." The Eagles' offense was kept at bay and on the sidelines for most of the first half.
The Yellowjacket football team had a long bus ride back from Thief River Falls after a 29-13 defeat at the hands of the Prowlers. A defensive battle for nearly two quarters was ended with a Jerry Guerrero 36-yard field goal giving the Prowlers an early 3-0 lead with two minutes remaining in the first half. "Defensively, we continued to play well, stopping Thief River Falls from scoring several times. Offensively, our biggest challenge has been putting the ball in the end zone," said Head Coach Mike Jordahl.
The Perham boys cross-country team backed up its number one Class A state ranking with a second place finish at their home invitational meet. The Yellowjackets were only bested by Class 2A Moorhead by a combined 55 seconds. The girls team finished fourth and also behind all double-A schools. "The boys had the top six under 17:25," Head Coach Jeff Morris said. Keith Schornack was tops for Perham with a fifth place finish at 16:36, only 20 seconds behind winner Glen Ellington from Moorhead and Bryon Schultz from Nevis who ran 16:14.35 and 16:14.87 respectively.
The first Saturday morning in October should have found me sleeping in until time to move to the couch and the weekly 11 hours of college football viewing. Instead, fishing buddy Troy had called Friday night and I was up at the crack of dawn Saturday morn ready to go fiddle with the finicky on Franklin Lake. According to the Department of Natural Resources there are more than 15 varieties of fish in Franklin. According to fishing buddy and I there are three: slimy northerns, largemouth bass and one dogfish. This information was discovered each in its own idiom.
Pam Johnson, the mother of Nathan Johnson, of Perham, a nine-year-old awaiting a second heart transplant, believes prayers got her family through Nathan's first heart transplant and the subsequent barrage of treatments and medications and believes they will bring a happy ending this time. "Prayers, we need lots of them these days," she said. Nathan is a little farm boy, at heart, he loves tractors, farm equipment and he's an outdoor kid who loves to play outside. He's a boy with a good heart, yet not so. Nathan is currently hampered from doing what many kids love to do, just play outdoors.
Having witnessed the bickering about school levies in Fergus Falls and Lake-Park Audubon and being a reader of the issues in the Frazee-Vergas district, like many of you, I've heard almost every argument known to man on the pros and cons of such communal, pecuniary dilemmas. One need not look far to find a reason to complain about taxation. What's rather odd to me is how easy it is for people to bark about taxation meant to fund school districts when every payday they say nothing publicly about the fact their own income taxes are immediately withdrawn from their paychecks and used to fund bi
It was the New York Mills volleyball teams' turn to take on the number two state-ranked and undefeated Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverines. The Eagles dropped all three varsity matches to the talented Wolverines group but played hard against a far superior foe. "I'm definitely satisfied with how the girls played against Wadena last night," said Head Coach Amy Koskela. According to Koskela, set one wasn't so pretty, but set two saw the Eagles ahead up to eight points. "Our serving was 93 percent as a team, which really helps. The front line got their hands on quite a few of their hits too.
The Perham volleyball team got off to a good start against Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton Tuesday taking the first set 25-19, before dropping the next three 25-15, 28-26 and 25-21 in a Heart O' Lakes Conference loss. "Poor blocking cost us the match tonight," said Head Coach Dan Christenson. "27 block errors with only 5 team blocks - that ratio has to change if this team plans to be a HOL conference or 8AA Section contender." Blocking was part of the game Christenson stressed would be addressed in practice looking for improvement.