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Cherokee two wins away from title

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By The Staff

By GOOSE LINDSAY

rcsports@bellsouth.net

Two down, two to go.

That’s the story for the Cherokee Middle School Yellow Jackets as they are two wins away from capturing the East Tennessee Large Division Sectional championship.

Cherokee’s journey began Thursday with an opening round road victory at Jacksboro then the Jackets picked up a 37-32 victory over Seymour Saturday in the tournament’s quarterfinal round played at Sevierville.

With Saturday’s victory, the Jackets advance to Friday’s semifinal game with Robinson Middle School from Kingsport. Tip-off is set for 8:15 p.m.

Just as was the case in their first round victory over Jacksboro, the Jackets came out of the gate strong against Seymour and held the lead from start to finish. Cherokee scored the first 10 points of Saturday’s contest and the Jackets would hold a 15-5 lead after six minutes of play.

Will Crowe led Cherokee in the opening period with six points while Aaron Fielden added five.

The Eagles did settle down and played better in the second quarter, but they could not make a dent in Cherokee’s lead as the Jackets took a 26-15 lead into the locker room at halftime.

Lucas Clower led the Jackets with five points in the second period.

Cherokee slowed the pace in the third period and that allowed the Jackets to take a 31-21 lead into the final period of play.

Cherokee scored the first basket of the final period to make the score 33-21, but the Jackets soon found themselves in a battle. Seymour would go on an 11-2 run that pulled the Eagles to within three points at 35-32 with 18 seconds left to play.

But just as soon as Seymour closed to within one possession, Cherokee put the game away at the charity stripe. Crowe hit two free throws with 15 seconds remaining to put an end to Seymour’s chance at winning.

Crowe led the Jackets on the night with 15 points and six rebounds while Clower added seven points, four rebounds and four steals. Fielden also had seven points.

Cherokee (37) Basler 2, Clower 7, Huddleston 4, Fielden 7, Crowe 15, Foster 2.