The Perham Yellowjackets scored a pair of first-quarter touchdowns in just over three minutes to assume a 13-0 lead on way to a 19-6 win that ruined the Pequot Lakes Patriots homecoming in Heart ‘O Lakes North Conference football action on Friday, Sept. 27.
The Patriots fall to 1-3 in the conference and 2-3 overall while Perham improves to 3-1 overall. Pequot Lakes will play at Crookston on Friday, Oct. 4.
Both early scores came as a result of Pequot Lakes’ turnovers.
“We just didn’t come out ready to play, and we dug a big hole early,” said Pequot Lakes coach Chip Lohmiller. “Again, we had too many turnovers.”
The first turnover came on the Patriots’ second play when Hayden Sturdevant recovered a fumble for the Yellowjackets at the Pequot Lakes’ 26. Austin Erickson then gained 17 yards for a first-and-goal at the PL 9. Payton Jordahl ran off right tackle and crossed the goal line just 1:20 into the game. Nick Bahls’ extra point kick made it 7-0.
Connor Davich returned the ensuing kickoff to the Patriots’ 32. Justin Mackenthun ran for 16 yards on the next play, and Pequot Lakes eventually moved into Perham’s territory, but a holding penalty drove the Patriots back to their own 41. That’s where the Yellowjackets jarred the ball loose and C.J. Mulcahy recovered at midfield.
Quarterback Eli Beachy, who had transferred from Staples-Motley, then handed off to Bahls who raced 50 yards for the score with 7:53 left in the quarter. The kick missed, but Perham enjoyed a 13-0 lead.
The Yellowjackets’ defense held Pequot Lakes, and forced a short punt to give Perham possession at the Patriots’ 41. On their second play, Jordahl ran the ball to the PL 9. The Yellowjackets’ drive went backward, and the Patriots eventually took over on downs. But Pequot Lakes would turn the ball over again as C.J. Borleis’ pass was intercepted the Perham 43.
But Perham would turn the ball back over to the hosts as Travis Jacobson recovered at the Perham 34. Borleis completed a pass to Alex Tangen at the Yellowjackets’ 20, and from there he completed a touchdown pass to Kyle Sellner with 4:26 left in the half. The conversion try failed and the Patriots trailed 13-6.
Perham closed out the first half by adding another score with 1:17 remaining when Bahls passed to Tyler Glines, who broke a couple tackles for a 50-yard score. The kick was right, and the Yellowjackets led 19-6.
A light drizzle falling to start the second half made the ball and field slippery, which led to a defensive battle. The Patriots had the first possession of the fourth quarter, but went three-and-out, and Perham ate up most of the clock with a long drive that ended when Brandon Olson was stopped just short of the goal line on a fourth-down-and-goal play.
Pequot Lakes took over possession, but had just 2:44 remaining to score. They did put together three first downs, including one on a 17-yard reception by Tyler Tappe and another on a 10-yard catch by Mackenthun. But time eventually ran out on the comeback bid.
“I thought on two of the interceptions that our receivers should have fought a little harder for possession,” Lohmiller said. “We did cut down our penalties tonight, but the key was the quick early touchdowns (by Perham).”
Shae Zeidler carried 17 times for 58 yards while Borleis was six of 10 for 70 yards passing with two interceptions.
The Patriots managed just 153 yards of offense, but they turned the ball over four times.
Mackenthun still leads the Patriots with 43 total tackles after five games.
Perham 13 6 0 0 — 19
Pequot Lakes 0 6 0 0 — 6
Per-Payton Jordahl 9 run (kick good), 1:20
Per-Nick Bahls 50 run (kick failed), 4:07
PL-Kyle Sellner 30 pass from C.J. Borleis (kick fail)
Per-Tyler Glines 50 pass from Bahls (kick fail)
Rushes-yards: PL 29-83; Perham 213
Pass comp-att-int-yds: PL 6-10-2-70
Total offense: PL 154; Perham 286
Rushing: PL-Shae Zeidler 118-57, Justin Mackenthun 4-19, Tappe 3-7
Passing: PL-Borleis 6-15-2-70
Receiving: PL-Sellner 1-30, Tappe 1-21, Mackenthun 2-11