The Cherokee Braves stayed the course to overcome a 34-29 halftime deficit sparked by torrid perimeter shooting by Odebolt-Arthur/Battle Creek-Ida Grove, and fought back in the second half to record a hard-earned 65-58 non-conference victory over the Falcons here on Monday night.
However, the Braves made halftime adjustments on defense and several players stepped up their games to outscore the Falcons 36-24 in the second half for the win.
Brock Dagel had his way much of the night against the shorter Falcon post players and led the Braves with a career-high 25 points, while Seth Mahnke and Matt Pitts added 10 apiece, Nick Parker eight, and Kyle Schuck six.
Alex Warnke led the Falcons in scoring with 15 points on five three-balls. Cole Boger added 12 points.
Cherokee sank 24-61 field goals for 39 percent, including a poor 3-16 effort from the three-point line. The winners cashed in 14-20 free throws.
OA-BCIG made 21-50 field goals for 42 percent, including 11-25 three-pointers, and was 5-8 from the free throw line.
"We started the game a little flat and we didn't rotate well defensively," said Cherokee coach Bob Lee. "We ended up giving their shooters some early open looks that really gave them some confidence. They shot the ball extremely well from behind the three-point line.
"Our defense picked up in the third quarter and turned the game around for us. We got a couple hustle plays from Seth Mahnke and Jakob Hummel that helped turn the momentum in our favor. We are real proud of the effort our guys showed in the second half to get us the win."
The 7-2 Braves host Storm Lake in Lakes Conference action Friday night, and play at dangerous South O'Brien Saturday night in Paullina.