Detroit Lakes football season awards announced

Annette, Nelson garner Adam Thielen Grinder awards.

Detroit Lakes linebacker Garret Nelson (33) brings down Perham's Chas Melvin during the Lakers defense of the traveling paddle trophy at Meinhover Field Friday, Oct. 30. Robert Williams / Tribune

Head coach Josh Omang announced team awards in a virtual end of season team banquet this week.

The Lakers finished the season 5-2 overall, earning the No. 3 seed in Section 8AAAA before losing to Willmar in the semifinals. Section 8AAAA had four of the top 10 QRF ranked teams, including defending state champions ROCORI. Detroit Lakes was ranked as high as No. 7 heading into November.

In a season recap, Omang noted the team chemistry the Lakers had and how they handled an unprecedented season.

The Lakers added weekly awards this year to recognize performances during the season on the field and in practice. An example, Garret Nelson was named the defensive player of the week four times in seven weeks.

Below are the season individual performance recognitions, district awards and the annual Adam Thielen Grinder Award winner(s).


The Thielen award was created to recognize players who display commitment, work ethic and character.

Past winners include guard Scott Heinecke (2016), RB/LB Tristen Rader (2017), OL/DL Noah Olds (2018), and lineman Seth Renney (2019).

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Andrew Annette (65) gets through the line on a defensive rush at East Grand Forks quarterback Sam Votava in a 21-7 week two victory over the Green Wave. Robert Williams / Tribune

There are two nominees in 2020: Nelson and Andrew Annette.

Nelson was a standout linebacker averaging 11 tackles per game. He had two interceptions, three forced fumbles, seven tackles for loss. Nelson routinely made big plays throughout the seven-game season.

Annette was the emotional leader of the team who rallied to return to the lineup after tearing his ACL against Perham in week four.

The Lakers had five all-district players and three receiving honorable mention.


Midwest Red All-District: Nelson, Oistad, Jake Green, Annette and Christian Solberg.

Midwest Red District Honorable Mention: Ty Jones, Caeden Yliniemi and Jacob Kalina.

Yliniemi was also the district’s specialist of the year.

Omang was excited about the underclassmen, especially getting varsity contributions from freshmen and sophomores, a rarity at Detroit Lakes. A dozen juniors will take over leadership on the team in 2021 replacing 18 graduating seniors: Matthew Tobkin, Braeden Wimmer, James Taylor, Cade Riewer, Jake Green, Clay Perkins, Hunter Jorgenson, Jacob Kalina, Joseph Heinlein, Nolan Mann, Garret Nelson, Dylan Schmoll, Michael Friendshuh, Sami Alsaidy, Thad Schlauderaff, Andrew Annette, Zack Oistad, and Andreas Barnett.

The Lakers had 27 players on the team earn academic all-conference in the Mid-State holding cumulative grade point averages of 3.7 or higher: Annette, Noah Besser, Chris Breeden, Ethan Carrier, Mason Carrier, Ty Haus, Cade Jackson, Ty Jones, Jorgenson, Hunter Korth, Chase Kukowski, Josh Mack, Will Martin, Landen Mousseau, Brock Okeson, Oistad, Jack pace, Jake Pavek, Perkins, Riewer, Austin Schons, Christian Solberg, Bradly Swiers, Evan Thomas, Tobkin, Wimmer and Connor Zamzo.

The team average GPA is 3.41.

DL opened the season with four straight victories before being defeated by Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton in a rare Saturday matinee at Mollberg Field. Detroit Lakes had not lost a regular season game in 23 contests dating back to 2017, a 35-21 defeat at the hands of the same Rebels in Glyndon. The last Laker loss at Mollberg Field was the week prior that year to Pequot Lakes.

Season results:


Week 1: W 55-0 over Thief River Falls

Week 2: W 21-7 over East Grand Forks

Week 3: W 24-0 over Fergus Falls

Week 4: W 28-10 over Perham

Week 5: L 16-8 to Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton

Week 6: W 14-6 over Pequot Lakes

8-4A semis: L 35-0 to Willmar


Robert Williams has been a sports editor for Forum Communications in Perham and Detroit Lakes since 2011.
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