By SCOTT MCKIE B.P.
ONE FEATHER STAFF
CASHIERS – Cherokee (12-3) beat the Blue Ridge Bobcats by 35 points (75-40) in an away game on Friday, Jan. 15, but the Braves struggled shooting in this contest. From the field, Cherokee hit 19 of 44 (43 percent), and from three-point land they only hit 9 of 32 (28 percent). The big difference in the game was that Blue Ridge shot worse from the field (37 percent), and Cherokee held them to less than half of their amount of shots at 19.
“It was one of the worst games we’ve played all year,” said Willis Tullos, Braves head coach. “We were really, really poorly prepared.”
He said the Braves struggled in all areas including shooting, ball handling and rebounding. “We just had a really bad ballgame. We work on these things every day, but we just didn’t come in here ready to play and we didn’t have any intensity.”
Blue Ridge led early in this game, but it wouldn’t last. After trailing by four points (11-7) midway through the first period, the Braves pressed and pressed and pressed and went on a 12-0 run to lead 19-11 at the end of the first eight minutes.
Cherokee wouldn’t trail again in this game.
Three minutes into the second period, Cherokee was up by 10 (24-14) and they led by 12 (27-15) at the 3:35 mark. Cherokee had doubled Blue Ridge’s score (34-17) as Justus Day, sophomore guard, hit a three-point shot with just less than two minutes left before the half. On the night, Day led Cherokee with 17 points. He also had 2 assists, 3 rebounds and 1 steal.
There were a few baskets hit in the final minute and Cherokee led 38-19 at the half.
The third period was slow. Both teams struggled with shooting. Cherokee hit a few and outscored the Bobcats 11-2 in the third to take a 49-21 lead into the fourth period.
Cherokee and Blue Ridge both woke up a little in the fourth and began hitting some shots. At the 5:25 mark, Cherokee led by 31 (59-28) and they held on for the big 75-40 win.
Tye Mintz led the Braves with 8 rebounds followed by Logan Teesateskie with 5.
Other Braves scorers include: Jason McMillan 7, Tye Mintz 6, Trace Lambert 2, Kennan Panther 12, Holden Straughan 9, Dez Crowe 3, Josiah Lossiah 3, Cory Junaluska 2, Logan Teesateskie 12 and Menoch Grant 2.
Blue Ridge was led by Ben Riddle 15, followed by Austin Mireles 9 and Dylan McCall 6.
To view or purchase photos from this game, visit: https://onefeather.smugmug.com/SPORTS/BASKETBALL/BRAVES-BASKETBALL-201516/At-Blue-Ridge-January-15/