Perham football ended their season with a difficult choice.
Instead of moving a playoff game against Pequot Lakes from Saturday, Nov. 21, to Friday, Nov. 20, the team elected not to play.
But, despite the difficulties they have faced throughout the season, head coach Kyle Knutson said that his team is grateful for each and every opportunity to play the game they love. He said that the choice to decide not to continue after winning a first-round playoff game on Nov. 17 was difficult but came after more than just Gov. Tim Walz’s order mandating a four-week break for Minnesota youth sports. Move the game up a day would have put the game on the last day possible for high school sports until Dec. 18.
“The policy with the high school league has always been to require a minimum of three days of recovery between games,” Knutson said. “We didn’t feel playing a non-advancing game on Friday after only two days of recovery was worth the risk of injury to any of our players.”
Knutson said that his team was obviously disappointed, but that they overall handled the news well. Ultimately the Yellowjackets were just excited to get on the field for seven games. He added that the uncertainty surrounding the season from the beginning helped ease the bad news.
“There is disappointment obviously,” Knutson said. “ I think they are happy they got seven games when it was looking like there would be no season at all.”
The team ended with a 4-3 record and three straight wins, capped by a 57-12 win over Park Rapids.
Knutson said that he is proud to see how his team overcame adversity. He said that he hopes his team continues to persevere and overcome challenges throughout their lives.
“They are an amazing group of young men,” Knutson said. “Very positive leaders and great role models.”