Trailing 16-7 after the first quarter and 26-15 at halftime, the sluggish Braves battled back to win the next two periods to force the OT, outscoring the E-Hawks 23-12 in the second half to forge a 38-38 tie at the end of regulation.
However, Emmetburg managed a 6-5 scoring advantage in the OT period to spell the difference in the outcome.
Matt Koch and Tyler Jones led the Cherokee scoring with 10 points each, while freshman post Brock Dagel tallied eight, and sophomore forward Kyle Schuck seven. Trevor Dettman led the E-Hawks with 11 points.
Cherokee sank 16-43 field goals for 37 percent, and was 11-17 from the foul line. Emmetsburg was 14-56 from the field for a chilly 25 percent, but made 6-18 three-pointers for valuable offenseive production. The E-Hawks were 10-17 from the foul line.
Dagel led Cherokee on the boards with 10 rebounds, and Schuck had nine, and Koch seven. Dagel, averaging more than two blocks a game, had four more this night.
"We went in with a defensive mind-set and pretty much played solid defense," said Cherokee coach Trent Coombs. "We missed a lot of easy inside shots. They just wouldn't fall, but I also think our shooters were being fouled. They missed a lot of calls.
"We fought back after that first quarter and I'm proud of the team. We kept trying and the shots didn't fall when we really needed them to. It was a rough game. Brock was fouled a lot inside and that affected his shooting."