Wolfpack And Braves Split Doubleheader In Cherokee Friday

Cherokee, Iowa — Western Christian and Cherokee split a Lakes Conference basketball doubleheader Friday night in Cherokee. The top ranked Cherokee  girls remained unbeaten on the year with a 76-43 win while the boys game went to Western 77-58.

Cherokee led at all the breaks in the girls game jumping our to a 26-9 first quarter lead. At halftime the score was 43-20. At the end of three the Braves were up 62-30 as they got the win 76-43.

Grace Anderson led all scorers with 14 points. Je Mae Nichols hit for 13 with Molly Pitts adding 10 off the bench. Western was led by Claire Bleeker with a 10 point night.

With the win Cherokee runs their record to 16-0 on the season and 7-0 in the Lakes as the top ranked team in the state in Class 3a. Western is 4-14 on the season and 1-7 in the conference.

In the boys game Western took a 16-10 first quarter lead. At halftime the lead remained at six points, 28-22. A run to start the second half turned a 28-22 halftime lead into a 53-38 advantage after three. Wyatt Gaulker ignited the offense hitting 14 of his game high 27 points in the third quarter. He was joined in double figures by Ty Van Essen with 18 points, Ty had 11 in the fourth quarter as the Wolfpack put it away.

Cherokee put four players in double figures led by Brayden Farver and Will Lugar with 15 points each. Mason Garver added 11 points and Levi Pingel hit for 10 points off the bench.

With the win Western is now 13-3 on the year and 7-1 in the conference. Cherokee falls to 8-8 on the year and 3-5 in the Lakes. Up next for Western is a Saturday afternoon visit to Sioux City Heelan. The boys will go first with a 2:00 pm tip off with the girls to follow. Pregame on KIWA FM 105.3 begins at 1:50. The Braves return to action on Tuesday playing host to Spirit Lake.


Comments from Head Coach Derek Keizer:

Nice win for us tonight.  Cherokee was a little shorthanded due to some injuries but they played extremely hard tonight.  They’ve improved a lot since we’ve last played them.

We struggled to get the ball in the basket the first half.  We were getting great looks from all spots on the floor but the ball wasn’t going in the hoop.
We were almost too unselfish tonight as we were passing up shots and maybe that caused us to be a little more timid.
At halftime, I thought we were always a step behind Cherokee defensively.  They were a tad more aggressive than us and we thought we could turn up the pressure in the second half and that’s just what we did.
Wyatt Gulker gave us the spark we needed in the second half.  He was doing a little bit of everything and really gave us the lift we needed to get the momentum our way.
Very pleased to get out of Cherokee with a win.