By Scott McKie B.P.
One Feather staff
The JV Braves ended their season on Thursday, Oct. 15 much the way it began – in the rain. On a rainy, cold night, Cherokee took on the Murphy JV Bulldogs in the game for third place in the Smoky Mountain Conference with Bulldogs taking a 41-26 win.
Earlier in the night, the Swain JV Maroon Devils defeated the Hayesville JV Yellow Jackets 42-6 to capture the conference championship.
Cherokee got off to a slow start in the game and fumbled the opening kickoff which was recovered by Murphy at the Cherokee 14 yard line. Jayvon McCullough was in the end zone for a Bulldogs score on the next play. Brooks Brown ran for the two-point conversion and Murphy led 8-0 just one minute into the game.
McCullough added another score in the quarter on a 5-yard run. Thai Welbourne’s extra point kick was good, and Murphy took a 15-0 lead into the 2nd quarter.
Following an interception by Seth Littlejohn later in the quarter, the Braves put together a nine play drive that culminated in a one-yard touchdown run by Corey Johnson. The two-point conversion was not good and Cherokee cut into the Bulldogs lead 15-6.
Murphy would add one more score before halftime on a 20-yard run by Bryan Ferguson. Welbourne’s kick made it 22-6 at halftime.
McCollough added two more touchdowns in the 3rd quarter on runs of 30 yards and 4 yards, and Johnson added another one-yard touchdown run for Cherokee to make it 35-12 going into the 4th quarter.
Cherokee didn’t quit and added two more scores on two Littlejohn touchdown runs (20,62). James Posey would add one more for Murphy on a 24-yard run and the Bulldogs would hold on for the 41-26 win.
Ray Smith led the way for the Braves with 10 tackles followed by Octavio Rivera and Justice Littlejohn with eight each.
On the season, the JV Braves outscored their opponents 216-199 and ended up with a 4-4 record.