Dilla, Messerole lead WHS scoring
SHELDON - The Cherokee Washington High girls basketball team got off to a slow start and then watched a spirited fourth-quarter rally fall short to drop a 61-50 season-opening, Lakes Conference tussle to Sheldon here Tuesday night.
The Orabs came out fired up and cashed in four three-pointers in the first quarter to take a quick 16-8 lead. Sheldon maintained that margin to take a 30-17 lead into halftime. Cherokee closed the gap to a 40-34 deficit after three periods, and rallied to within four points in the closing minutes, before the Orabs put it away down the stretch.
Kylie Dilla led Cherokee's scoring with 15 points, while Kayla Messerole added 13, Lacie Drennan seven, and Sarah Radke six in the losing effort.
Kellie Vust led the winning Orabs with 23 game-high points.
Cherokee sank 19-52 field goals for 37 percent, including a shaky 1-10 three-balls. Sheldon made 22-44 field goals for a warm 50 percent, including 6-12 from the three-point arc. The WHS gals netted 11-15 free throws, and Sheldon made 11-25.
Messerole led Cherokee on the boards with six rebounds, while Drennan and Erica Nicholson grabbed five each, and Morgan Mahnke four. Dilla had three assists to lead her team in that category.
Both teams recorded 25 turnovers in a jittery first-game performance.
"We got off to a very slow start and Sheldon came out strong with four three-pointers," noted veteran Cherokee coach Curt Klaahsen. "They were much more aggressive than us and our frequent turnovers stopped us from a come-back.
The Cherokee girls take on another tough Lakes Conference road assignment Friday at Hull Western Christian, and then host non-league foe Sergeant Bluff-Luton on Saturday. The WHS boys also play SB-L in a season-opener Saturday night following the girls game, which begins at 5:30 p.m.