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By BROWNIE ROSE
Fresh off winning their second straight AA district title, the Cherokee Middle Yellow Jackets picked up their second win in three days Thursday as they eased past Midway Middle 16-0 at Midway.
Last Tuesday, Cherokee cruised past Harriman to sweep the district for the second year in a row. Thursday’s win against Midway would be their second consecutive win.
Cherokee kicked the opening kickoff out of bounds and that left Midway starting on their own 35. The Green Waves offense pounded out one first down Josh Brummitt running for nine yards on two carries then on fourth-and-one, Dillion Keller got the first down with a two-yard gain.
Midway eventually crossed midfield, but a false start helped kill the drive then Cherokee’s James Daley partially blocked the kick.
Cherokee took over on their own 42 and immediately began a scoring drive. Brody Roberts picked up six on the first play from scrimmage then Will Crowe ripped off a 42-yard gain to the Midway 10.
Cherokee was flagged for two holding penalties in the first three plays to move the ball back to the 34, but it wouldn’t matter as QB Brandon Ott hit Crowe for a 25-yard touchdown.
Daley ran in the two-point conversion for a 8-0 lead with 28.6 seconds left in the first quarter.
Midway started their next drive at their own 35 and again moved into Cherokee territory, but the drive would stall again and the Green Waves would punt from the 38.
Ott returned the kick to the 38 where the Jackets would use another time consuming drive to end the half.
The Jackets would drive the ball inside the Midway 20, but with time running short, the Jackets had to go to the air and the half ended with Midway’s Brandon Lemons sacking Ott for a 10-yard loss.
Cherokee got a break when Midway’s second half kickoff went out of bounds at the 46. The Jackets, however, did not take advantage of the good field position as they turned the ball over on downs at the Midway 36.
Midway, however, fumbled the snap on the second play of the possession and a swarm of Jackets jumped on it.
Cherokee, however, again could not capitalize on the break. Crowe pounded the ball for 21 yards to the 16 on three carries, but the Green Waves stood their ground and took over on downs four plays later.
Midway wouldn’t be able to dodge a third bullet. The Waves drove out past their 20, but on fourth-and-six from the 24, Cherokee’s Aaron Acosta picked off a pass to give the Jackets excellent field position at the Midway 35.
Crowe would carry four straight times for 20 yards before Roberts ripped off a 12-yard run, moving the ball to the three. Roberts scored on the next play.
Daley cruised in with the two-pointer to put the Jackets up 16-0 with 43.2 seconds left in the game.
The Waves nearly scored before the game ended as QB Logan Davidson completed three passes to move the ball inside the 20, but Davidson’s final pass of the game fell incomplete in the end zone.
Midway will host Coalfield on Thursday while Cherokee will play Oliver Springs at home on Monday.