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It took another solid defensive effort to give the Park Rapids football team a 7-0 win over East Grand Forks Friday night at Vern Weekley Field. After a scoreless first half, Tristin Persons' 3-yard TD run and Jarrett Johnson's kick gave the Panthers a 7-0 lead with 3:05 to play in the third quarter. Quarterback Jake Dickinson rushed for 15 and 28 yards during that four-play, 49-yard scoring drive. The Panthers' defense made that lead hold up.
Aaron Morris said it would take some time for the Park Rapids football team to click with a new offensive system. It took the Panthers only two games to show signs of how explosive that offense could be. The Panthers rushed for 332 yards and had 16 first downs offensively while the defense delivered again by holding Thief River Falls to only 90 total offensive yards and two first downs in a 27-7 victory Friday night at Vern Weekley Field.
Two weather delays couldn't take away the momentum from the United North Central football team Friday night. Lightning delayed play twice after UNC touchdowns in the first quarter, but the Warriors maintained the momentum both times action resumed for a 40-0 victory at Pelican Rapids. Kirby Hdlicka scored on a 4-yard touchdown run and James Clark ran in the conversion to give UNC an 8-0 lead on the opening series. A 45-minute weather delay followed.
The combination of 34 kills and 13 ace serves sparked the Menahga volleyball team to a 25-16, 25-18, 25-22 Park Region Conference win over Bertha-Hewitt Thursday night at Menahga. In Set 1, a tip by Olivia Yliniemi, two kills by Leah Schwartz, a pair of ace serves by Mackenzie Kako and another kill by Schwartz gave Menahga an 11-6 lead. Back-to-back kills by Yliniemi, a tip and ace serve by Aimee Lake, a kill by Schwartz, and a tip by Annie Lake made it 20-12. An ace serve by Annie Lake, a kill by Yliniemi, two tips by Madi Marjamaa and a tip by Yliniemi closed out the set.
Nevis' defense forced four turnovers and shut down Kelliher-Northome's offense as the Tigers rolled to a 26-0 win in a battle of rated 9-man football teams Friday night at Kelliher. Logan Tinnes' 1-yard touchdown run and conversion with 7:19 to play in the first quarter provided the only scoring in the first half as Nevis carried an 8-0 lead into halftime.
Trailing 81-75 entering the final event, the Park Rapids girls swimming team needed a 1-2 finish in the 400-yard freestyle relay to defeat Thief River Falls Thursday night. The Panthers delivered in the last relay to rally for an 87-83 victory at Thief River Falls. Olivia Ulvin, Trinah Szafranski, Liesel Smee and Maija Hovelsrud clocked a winning time of 4:32.14 while Aleah Voigt, Jessica Kaseman, Lizzie Bannerman and Chloe Voigt followed in 4:44.18 as the Panthers swept the last event to improve to 2-0 in dual meets this season.
It was a repeat of the season opener Tuesday at the Johanna Olson Invitational cross-country meet at Wadena as Park Rapids' Lydia Kantonen had the best time while United North Central had the best girls team score. Kantonen, who led the field at the season-opening meet at Blueberry Pines, covered the 5,000-meter course at Whitetail Run Golf Course in 20 minutes, 15 seconds while Annika Aho followed in 20:28 to lead UNC to another team title with 58 points.
A near-perfect performance led the Park Rapids volleyball team to a dominating 25-9, 25-14, 25-9 win at Frazee Tuesday night. The Panthers pounded down 44 kills while hitting at a .348 clip, served 18 aces while putting 70 of 73 serves in play, and had only two errors receiving serve to snap a seven-match losing streak to Frazee and improve to 2-1 on the season.
United North Central and Nevis were among the local teams listed in the first Minnesota high school football polls. Despite a 14-6 loss to Park Rapids in the season opener, UNC was rated No. 19 in the state Class AA poll. Barnesville (No. 4), Bagley (No. 12), Hawley (No. 14) and Ottertail Central (No. 17) were also listed. Caledonia was rated No. 1. In the Class 9-man poll, Nevis and Ada-Borup were tied for the No. 16 spot while Grand Meadow held the top spot. Waubun (No. 4), Kelliher-Northome (No. 13) and Clearbrook-Gonvick (No. 14) were also listed.
Another sweep in singles play Tuesday afternoon at Wadena led the Park Rapids girls tennis team to another Mid-State Conference victory. The Panthers won all four singles matches in straight sets to spark a 6-1 win over Wadena-Deer Creek. Julia Smith, Natalie Kinkel, Tori Hilmanowski and Abby Morris combined to drop only seven games in their four singles matches.