Learning to operate out of a retooled offense after several years of the pass-only spread offense, the Braves struggled to get untracked against the opportunistic Storm Lake defense. In fact, three of the Tornado touchdowns by the Storm Lake defense came after costly Cherokee miscues on offense.
The Braves didn't muster their initial first down until the fourth quarter after Storm Lake had rung up a 39-0 lead and the continuous clock invoked after one team leads by 35 points kicked in to thankfully shorten the game.
The Tornadoes responded with a 13-point third quarter on TDs by Taylor Lullman on a 5-yard run after a blocked punt, and an 8-yard run by Krier to make it 39-0. Storm Lake anchored the blow-out with a 90-yard kick-off return by Krier after the Braves first TD of the night.
Cherokee scored its first TD in the fourth period on a 27-yard pass play from Seliger to Alanzo Ruble for 27 yards, and an 8-yard run by Kristian Freed after a beauteous 71-yard pass play from Seliger to Hummel. That 2-point conversion play was good from Seliger to Seth Mahnke.
Seliger was 8-16 passing for 145 yards, and McCabe 4-14 for 54 yards. Sam Hinkhouse led Cherokee in rushing with 5 carries for 32 yards. Desmond Khounlo led Storm Lake rushing with 11 hauls for 77 yards, and Nolan Cone had 11 hauls for 45 yards. McCabe was 7-48 yards.
Freed led the Braves defense with 14 tackles from his linebacker spot, and Ruble tallied 11 stops.
"We had a lot of miscues and you can't do that and expect to win," said Cherokee coach Neil Phipps. "We have some things to square away. We believe in our kids and we will address this in practice and they will improve."
The Braves host rated Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn Friday night in their home opener.