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Perham rallies past Patriots 32-19 - Yellowjackets win lightning-delayed game

Pequot Lakes running back Deven Psyck rushes through the Yellowjacket defense on Friday, Sept. 15. Dan Determan/Echo Journal 1 / 2
Patriot quarterback Blake Lane attempts a pass under pressure in the second quarter of the Patriots' game against Perham on Friday, Sept. 15. Dan Determan/Echo Journal 2 / 2

It took almost three days, but the visiting Perham Yellowjackets topped the Pequot Lakes Patriots 32-19 in a Midwest Red Subdistrict football battle on Monday, Sept. 18.

The Yellowjackets returned to Pequot Lakes to finish a game that was postponed because of lightning after three quarters on Friday, Sept. 15. But on Monday, Perham showed it was ready for the fourth quarter by scoring 14 straight points on a pair of touchdown passes.

"We were frustrated how things went on Friday," said Perham coach Kyle Knutson, "but the kids were focused tonight. (Finishing the game on Monday) throws a loop in their routines, but our kids adjusted well against a good team."

The Patriots had led 19-18 when play was officially stopped at 11:02 p.m. last Friday as officials deemed it was not safe for the players to come back on the field following a long delay. Perham, which was ranked No. 7 in Class 3A, was facing a fourth-down-and-two situation from it's own 35 yard line when play stopped after three quarters.

Action picked up Monday to start the fourth quarter. And although Perham did gain the first down on the fourth-down run, they were forced to punt four plays later. The Patriots then picked up one first down, but were eventually forced to punt with eight minutes remaining.

Perham moved into Pequot Lakes' territory after a first down. But the game changed on a key third-down-and-five play as the Yellowjackets took the lead when Beachy's long pass fell into the outstretched arms of Dawson Honer, who had raced past his defender for a 39-yard TD catch. Martin Lafond completed a halfback pass to a diving Zach Zajac for a successful two-point conversion and Perham led 26-19 with 6:32 remaining.

On their next possession, the Patriots drove to the Yellowjackets' 44 before turning the ball over when Lafond intercepted Blake Lane's pass at midfield with 4:52 remaining. Perham drove to the Patriots' 14, and that's where they set up for a field goal try with 1:15 left. They faked the field goal, and instead Beachy threw to Lafond for a touchdown. The conversion kick was blocked but the visitors had a 32-19 lead.

"We knew they weren't going to kick," Pequot Lakes coach Chip Lohmiller said of the fake field goal. "We just weren't ready. (Perham) scored on all the things we talked about the past two days. I'm disappointed in our performance today."

The Patriots' final drive ended around midfield when Lane was intercepted by Beachy with 6.1 seconds remaining to clinch the win.

Last Friday, the game started with the Patriots scoring on a drive that stayed alive on a bad snap that led to punter Maxx Schindel running for a first down. Then on second down and 11 yards to go, Lane connected with receiver Austin Young for a 31-yard touchdown. The Patriots led 7-0 after a Chase Larson extra point kick.

Late in the first quarter, Perham got their first score on a 40-yard pass from Beachy to receiver Ty Moser, but failed on a two-point conversion run. But Pequot Lakes bounced back early in the second quarter as running back Nathan Traut broke loose for a 56-yard sideline run to give his team a 13-6 lead with 10:52 left in the half.

After an exchange of punts, the Yellowjackets would move in for a touchdown on an 11-yard option play with as Beachy scored with 3:25 left in the half. Another unsuccessful conversion preserved a one-point lead for the Patriots. About one minute later, Pequot Lakes extended its lead to 19-12 on a 73-yard pass from Lane to Traut and a failed conversion run.

The Yellowjackets answered with the only points of the third quarter on a 22-yard scoring run by Moser with 1:47 remaining. The conversion run failed and the Patriots still led 19-18 before the game was postponed.

Notes:

An admirable size crowd turned out for Monday's lightning delayed final quarter. Lohmiller said he had never been involved in a weather delayed football game as a long-time player or coach while Knutson said "three or four years ago" his squad finished a game against Detroit Lakes on a Saturday following a Friday night delay.

Perham improved to 3-0 overall while Pequot Lakes dropped to 1-2. The Patriots are scheduled to play at Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 22. The Rebels have defeated Pequot Lakes in four straight Section 8-3A title games.

Perham 6 6 6 14 - 32

Pequot Lakes 7 12 0 0 - 19

First quarter

PL-Austin Young 30 pass from Blake Lane (Chase Larson kick) 7:08

PER-Ty Moser 40 pass from Jenson Beachy (run failed) :58.9

Second quarter

PL-Nathan Traut 56 run (pass failed) 10:52

PER-Beachy 11 run Z(pass failed) 3:25

PL-Traut 73 pass from Lane (run failed) 2:16

Third quarter

PER-Moser 22 run (run failed) 1:47

Fourth quarter

PER-Dawson Horner 39 pass from Beachy (Martin Lafond pass from Zach Zajac) 6:32

PER-Lafond 14 pass from Beachy (kick blocked) 1:08

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