For the first time in about seven years, the Pelican Rapids Vikings defeated cross-Otter Tail County rival Perham on the basketball court, with a decisive home victory.
Considered by many observers an upset, with the lopsided score of 64-34, the Vikings had a balanced offensive and defensive outing all night.
One of the highlights was this dunk by Brayden Ecker, pictured above.
Background, Viking Ian Fahje, who notched 13 points and led the team with seven rebounds.
Peyton Blakeway looks for a shot during the Vikings home victory over Perham Jan. 6
Tanner Tollerud looks for a shot, guarded by Perham’s Charles Melvin.
Timmy Guler led the Vikings scoring with 15. Guler looks for an opening between Alex Ohm and Joshua Peterson.
Brady Petznick driving the ball past Perham’s Austin Aaneneson.
Luke Sjolie puts a shot up for the Vikings.
Hunter Williams with the ball for Pelican Rapids.

PHOTOS BY LOUIS HOGLUND

The Pelican Rapids boys basketball team resumed play after the Holiday break with a home game against the Perham Yellowjackets  January 7. 

They were supposed to play East Grand Forks on Tuesday as well, but that game was postponed due to the inclement weather.

 With the game tied early 7-7, the Vikings went on a seven point run to gain a lead that they would not relinquish the rest of the night against their Heart O’ Lakes conference rival. Pelican Rapids took a 25-15 lead into halftime and took control early in the second half with a 16-0 run to build their lead to 41-15 as they held Perham scoreless for the first nine minutes of the second half. 

The Vikings added to the lead in the last nine minutes of the game as they went on to post a 64-34 conference win.

 “It was a fantastic defensive effort from our guys tonight as they did a great job of rotating and flying around to limit open looks for Perham,” head coach John Gullingsrud commented. “We had eleven steals that helped get us some easy baskets in transition and limited them to 1-16 shooting from the three point line, which really shows the effort we played with to be able to close out on their shooters as well as we did. You could see the confidence grow in our team as the game went on as the guys kept playing hard and unselfish.”

 Leading the way offensively for Pelican Rapids was Timmy Guler with 15 points. Ian Fahje was also in double figures with 13 points to go with a team high 7 rebounds, and Hunter Williams had a solid performance with 8 points and 6 rebounds. 

Tanner Tollerud had team highs with 7 assists and 2 steals as well. As a team, the Vikings made 27-47 (57.4%) of their shots overall and 4-7 (57.1%) of their threes. 

They also outrebounded Perham 28-21.

 The win ups Pelican Rapids’ overall record on the season to 5-3 and moves their HOL conference record to 2-0. 

Perham was 5-2 after the Pelican loss, and the Vikings  also put an end to Perham’s  four game winning streak.

Pelican at home Thursday, play tourney Saturday

The Pelican Vikings boys  have a busy week with three games.

 Pelican Rapids hosted Ada-Borup West Monday night.

The boys are home vs. Hawley on Thursday night, Jan. 13 and travel to Perham on Saturday to participate in the Breakdown Crossover Classic where they will play Oak Grove at 9:30 a.m.