The Perham Yellowjackets moved one step closer to defending its Section 8AA Team Championship with a 44-24 win over Alexandria in the Section 8AA Quarterfinals at the Hive on Feb. 11.

The Yellowjackets started slow, dropping three of the first four matches, however, rallied and quickly took the duel over.

Kaden Feldt opened with a 2-0 decision win over Mason McGrane at 106. However, the Cardinals responded with three straight wins when Blaze Nelson earned a 7-6 decision, followed by a fall from Kelly Johnson at 120 and a 5-2 decision win from AJ Sparr at 126.

Perham responded with five straight wins, gaining control of the duel with Alexandria.

Gabe Bellefeuille started the run with a 6-4 decision win over Ryan Borris at 132. Blake Lorentz continued the momentum for Perham with a win at 138. He secured a major decision 15-4 victory over Cole Vatnsdal.

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Braylon Rach secured a strong win at 145 when he defeated Landon Seward by a major decision 14-2, which gave Perham the lead for good at 14-12.

Perham’s Jack Fudge followed with a fall at the two minute and 36 second mark at 152, extending Perham’s lead to 20-12.

Alexandria Area answered with a JP Rodel fall at 160 which came at the 1:44 mark. Brian Ramos followed with a pin at 1:07 against Gavryn Fernholz at 170.

Alexandria Area secured its final win at 182 when Cody Richardson earned a pin at 182 at the 3:28 mark.

Perham closed out with three straight wins, two of them by forfeit. Dawson Kellogg won by forfeit at 195 and Reece Willprecht picked up a forfeit win at 285. However, it was a fall by Dominic Gottwalt that secured the victory for the Yellowjackets. He was able to quickly turn Stone Smith on the mat and secure the win in 33 seconds, giving Perham an insurmountable lead at 38-24, before the final forfeit win at 285.

The Yellowjackets will now wrestle against Thief River Falls on Championship Friday at the Hive. Thief River Falls advanced with a 37-35 victory over Thief River Falls in the quarterfinals. The other semifinal will feature Detroit Lakes against Pequot Lakes/Pine River-Backus. Detroit Lakes advanced with a 66-5 victory over United Clay Becker. Pequot Lakes/Pine River-Backus defeated Pierz 53-21 in its quarterfinal.

The Section 8AA semifinals will begin at 6 p.m. on Feb. 14 at the Hive. The two semifinal winners will meet at 8 p.m. at the Hive or 20 minutes following the conclusion of the semifinals.

Section 8AA Team Championships

Quarterfinals

Perham 44, Alexandria 24

106: Kaden Feldt (PER) def. Mason McGrane (AA) (Dec. 2-0)

113: Blaze Nelson (AA) def. Aaron Lorentz (PER) (Dec. 7-6)

120: Kelly Johnson (AA) def. Josh Mellema (PER) (Fall 2:55)

126: AJ Sparr (AA) def. Gareth Covington (PER) (Dec. 5-2)

132: Gabe Bellefeuille (PER) def. Ryan Borris (AA) (Dec. 6-4)

138: Blake Lorentz (PER) def. Cole Vatnsdal (AA) (Maj. Dec. 15-4)

145: Braylon Rach (PER) def. Landon Seward (AA) (Maj. Dec. 14-2)

152: Jack Fudge (PER) def. Mason Teaser (AA) (Fall 2:36)

160: JP Rodel (AA) def. Isaac Lung (PER) (Fall 1:44)

170: Brian Ramos (PER) def. Gavryn Fernholz (AA) (Fall 1:07)

182: Cody Richardson (AA) def. Gordon Enyart (PER) (Fall 3:28)

195: Dawson Kellogg (PER) wins by forfeit

220: Dominic Gottwalt (PER) def. Stone Smith (AA) (Fall :33)

285: Reece Wilprecht (PER) wins by forfeit