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Yellowjackets advance in 6AA playoffs

It was only a matter of time before the Perham Yellowjackets were about to break out in their Section 6AA fastpitch playoff game with Staples-Motley. The Cardinals flirted with disaster in the first, third and fourth innings, before the Yellowjac...

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Perham's Aixa Kolofale slides into home with the go ahead run in the sixth inning. Perham scored seven runs in the inning, pulling away for an 8-1 victory. Jason Groth/FOCUS

It was only a matter of time before the Perham Yellowjackets were about to break out in their Section 6AA fastpitch playoff game with Staples-Motley. The Cardinals flirted with disaster in the first, third and fourth innings, before the Yellowjackets broke free scoring seven runs en route to an 8-1 victory.

“We started out kind of rough, but when we brought it in in that sixth inning we knew we had to get going,” Perham pitcher Katie Zepper said. “We brought up all of our energy and we wanted to win, which got us hits. We just scored a bunch and that got us really happy.”

The Yellowjackets did not have many hits in the win, in fact they only had seven hits, but they were timely. Four of them came in the game-changing sixth inning when they scored seven runs.

Emma Bowers finished with two hits and two runs batted in. Her line drive single in the sixth inning gave the Yellowjackets a 2-1 lead.

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Katie Johnson makes the catch in foul territory.

The inning started when Jojo Winkels reached on an error and moved to third on crushing double by Aixa Kolofale. Bowers followed with the two run single, which turned the tide for the Yellowjackets.

After Grace Minten was hit by a pitch and Katelyn Pedersen drew a walk, Mattie Scheidecker had a hot shot through the third baseman’s legs, scoring a pair of runs. Grayce Mickelson followed with a double in the gap, which brought home two more runs. Zepper followed with an RBI triple in the big inning.

The Yellowjackets tacked on another run when Grace Minten singled home Kolofale, who reached on an error, for the eighth run of the game.

The Yellowjackets avoided some early trouble as well. The Cardinals stranded a runner at third in the first inning and the bases full in the second. Zepper worked around a pair of singles and a walk by striking out two batters and inducing a ground ball to short.

She wiggled out of trouble in the sixth as well, limiting the damage to just one run. A walk, followed by two singles loaded the bases for the Cardinals. Zepper induced back-to-back ground balls, yielding one run, but escaping further damage.

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“I know I just have to stay focus and try to hit the spots the catcher gives me,” Zepper said. “I have to make sure I don’t give up easy spots that they can hit and I just keep focus on what I have to do to get the out and what’s up next.”

Zepper went the distance, earning her third win in two days. She allowed one run on five hits. She struck out five and walked two batters.

Sarah Kossan took the loss. She allowed eight runs on seven hits. She struck out seven but she walked three and hit six batters.

The victory improves the Yellowjackets to 9-12 overall on the season. They will take on the No. 1 seed from the North, Osakis, who was a 10-0 victor over Ottertail Central. The Yellowjackets and the Silverstreaks went to the wire earlier in the season with the Silverstreaks defeating the Yellowjackets, 8-7. First pitch is set for 4:30 p.m. on May 23 in Alexandria.

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Mattie Scheidecker slides in safely at home.

Related Topics: PERHAM
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