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Perham trio finishes in the top 10

Perham's Clayton Anderson leads Carson Speicher around a turn during the Hillsboro Early Bird Invitational. Speicher, Anderson and Brandon O'Hara finished in the top 10 for the Yellowjackets. Submitted photo

The expectations are high for the Perham boys cross country team and they showcased why that is during the Hillsboro Early Bird Invite on Aug. 26 in Hillsboro, N.D. The Yellowjackets had three runners finish in the top 10 on their way to a second place finish in a meet that featured some of North Dakota’s best and 21 teams overall.

The meet was a two-horse race between Grand Forks Red River and the Yellowjackets. The next closest team to the second place Yellowjackets, finished 68 points behind, which was Grand Forks Central, who ended with 135 points. Grand Forks Red River captured the crown with 57 points, while Perham came in second with 67 points. West Fargo Sheyenne was fourth while Fargo Davies finished fifth.

Carrington’s Payton Smith was the meet winner, finishing with a time of 15 minutes and 45.2 seconds. He was followed by Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton’s Dan Wilson, who finished with a time of 15:56.4. Sheyenne’s Leo Smith was third at 15:59.7.

The next three spots were occupied by a trio of Yellowjackets. Carson Speicher led the way for Perham, finishing fourth overall. Speicher crossed the line at 16:00.2. He maintained a pace of 5:20 during the event.

Right on Speicher’s heels was Clayton Anderson. Anderson finished fifth overall, just one second behind Speicher, ending with a time of 16:01.2.  

Brandon O’Hara finished sixth overall. He came across the finish line with a time of 16:03.9. Speicher, Anderson and O’Hara give Perham a dynamic trio that will help lead them up front during the season.

Brandon O'Hara

Perham had four runners finish in the top 20 overall. Bailey Evenson came across the line with a time of 16:51.4.

Elijah Morris finished the race in 32nd place overall. He finished with a time of 17:23.2, while Owen Werner was close behind in 33rd place, crossing the line at 17:24.3.  Gunnar Anderson came in 39th place overall, finishing with a time of 17:32.2.

The Yellowjackets return to action with the St. Olaf Showcase on Aug. 31, beginning at 10 a.m. It’s one of the premier meets in the state and gives teams an early look at the Minnesota State Championship course.

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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