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Big first inning sets tone in Perham win

A six-run first inning set the tone for the Perham Yellowjackets as they cruised to a 10-3 Section 8AA first round victory over Ottertail Central at Krueger Field on May 28.

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Perham's Sam Still dives in safely into third base in Perham's six-run first inning in its 10-3 victory over Ottertail Central in the Section 8AA playoffs at Krueger Field. Jason Groth/FOCUS

A six-run first inning set the tone for the Perham Yellowjackets as they cruised to a 10-3 Section 8AA first round victory over Ottertail Central at Krueger Field on May 28.

The Yellowjackets brought the bats out early in the first inning on the Bulldogs. Perham scored six runs on six hits in the opening inning, battering OTC’s Drake Larson.

Michael Benke led the way with three hits and three runs batted in, while Carter Mulcahy, Maddux Kovash, Dawson Stevens and Chayse Solberg had two hits each in the game. Perham finished with 13 hits in the game. Sam Still and Noah Rooney added a hit each. Rooney drove in two runs as did Kovash in the win.

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Perham's Josh Jeziorski fires to first, attempting to complete the double play.

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Still started the first inning rally with a single, which was followed by one from Mulcahy. Kovash delivered a double, which scored one. Josh Jeziorski delivered a sacrifice fly to score another run. Benke followed with a two-run single and Rooney drove in two with a single as well, helping Perham to the 6-0 lead in the first.

Ottertail Central cut into the lead with a single run, but Perham answered back with two of their own. Perham added a pair of runs in the sixth. OTC scored two runs in the seventh, but Perham cruised to the 10-3 victory.

Dawson Stevens picked up the win. He went three and a third and allowed one run on three hits. He struck out two and walked three batters. Still pitched an inning and two-thirds of relief. He allowed one hit and struck out one. Benke pitched an inning of scoreless relief, while Diggins pitched an inning, walked three and allowed two runs and struck out one.

Larsen took the loss for OTC. He allowed six runs on seven hits in just two innings of work. He struck out one and walked one. Daxton Olson and Cole Brandner both allowed two runs in their two innings of work.

Perham improved to 18-3 with the win and will take on Pequot Lakes in the first round of the double elimination portion of the Section 8AA Tournament. Perham will host Pequot Lakes at 3 p.m. at Krueger Field, while Wadena-Deer Creek will take on Breckenridge at 3 p.m. at Matt’s Field. The winners will play at 5 p.m. at Krueger Field, while the loser’s bracket game will take place at 5 p.m. at Matt’s Field.

In the other half of the bracket, East Grand Forks will take on Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, while Hawley will take on Park Rapids Area.

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Perham's Maddux Kovash dives into third before the throw during Perham's six-run first inning. Jason Groth/FOCUS

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