Yellowjackets' defense shuts Panthers' offense down in 74-24 victory
Perham's defense forced 30 turnovers and held Park Rapids to only nine field goals in a 74-24 boys basketball victory at the Area High School gym Monday night.
The Yellowjackets jumped out to an 11-0 lead en route to a 32-9 lead at the half. Taylor Kimball hit a 3-pointer with 14:45 to play in the first half to end Perham's game-opening run.
Perham followed with a 9-0 run before Paul Dirks' layup made it 21-5 with 7:21 to go in the first half. Two free throws by Kimball with 3:22 left and another layup by Dirks with 1:43 remaining accounted for the Panthers' other points.
Another 9-0 run to open the second half gave Perham a 41-9 lead with 16:15 to play. After a layup by Mitch Long at the 16:03 mark, the Yellowjackets went on a 14-0 run to build a 55-11 lead with 13:54 remaining. Dillon Theis' layup with 13:36 left ended that streak.
Theis hit two free throws and a pair of layups as the Panthers trailed 61-19 with 11:34 to go. Perham led 70-19 with 7:49 to play before layups by Kyle Goplerud and Chris Goplerud and a free throw by Tyler Ridlon in the final 6:08 ended Park Rapids' scoring.
Ben Bucholz (21), Zach Gabbard (15) and Sam Stratton (12) hit double figures for Perham, which improved to 10-3 on the season. The Yellowjackets were ranked No. 10 in this week's state Class AA poll.
Theis (8), Kimball (5) and Dirks (4) combined for 17 points to lead the Panthers, who fell to 0-11 on the season.
The Panthers, who played at Nevis Thursday night and hosted Detroit Lakes in a Mid-State Conference game Friday night, will host Crosby-Ironton in another conference game Tuesday night.