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High School Basketball:
Cherokee Hold Off Their Division Leaders

Thursday, February 9, 2006

By Jason Brown
SJSports Special Correspondent

It was a playoff game atmosphere before the upcoming state basketball tournament even began. Lenape, already with the Olympic Conference American Division title in hand, traveled to Cherokee in a battle between the two teams leading their division. Both of these teams have secured a position in the state tournament, but this game was about bragging rights. With a pack gymnasium and the Chiefs leading by double digits, the Lenape fans would watch the Indians pull with a point late in the quarter. Cherokee would then end their scoring drought and hold off Lenape and post a 52-49 win.

Clarence Jackson started this game determined to have a better performance than the first time these two teams met. During their first meeting of the season, Lenape had their way against the Chiefs winning by nine points. Jackson would find his way to the basket for points, but the Indians would come way with the win. This game was different as together as a team the Chiefs had a 45-34 lead heading into the final quarter. Lenape would then go on a 10-0 run to only trail by a point with 1:10 remaining in the game. The Chiefs were determined to end their three game losing streak and they would hold off Lenape for the win. Jackson would finish with a game high 23 points and Chris Cowan would add 10 points for Cherokee. Lenape would have their nine game winning streak snapped. Ryan Thompson would lead the Indians with 18 points and Kevin Gallagher finished the game with 11 points.

Photos by Mark Fletcher

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