The Braves unleashed a potent rushing game and some timely defensive stops to post their first win of the season after totaling an 0-3 early season start, with three of four games on the road against tough competition.
The story this night was the running attack spearheaded by sophomore Luke Ziemen, who rushed 36 times for 180 yards and three touchdowns; and junior Marc Husman, who carried the ball 16 times for 108 yards and two TDs, and also was on the receiving end of a 46-yard TD pass from senior quarterback Nate Seliger.
The rest of Cherokee's scoring included one-yard and two-yard TDs by Seliger, a thrilling 86-yard kick-off return by Husman, five-yard and seven-yard TD runs by Ziemen, and an 11-yard TD run by Husman.
The Braves rushed 65 times for 302 yards and limited the Rams to 102 yards on 18 carries, Dougherty led the hosts with 13 hauls for 57 yards.
Seliger was 4-6 passing for 125 yards and one TD. Dougherty was 12-22 for 194 yards, one TD and one interception.
Husman and Rick Weaver led the Cherokee defenders with eight tackles each, while Nathan Morgan had five and Miah Back and Lane Peterson four each. Peterson also had a sack and blocked PAT kick, and Dillon Drefke registered a pick. Weaver and Dan Curtis also had fumble recoveries.
"The guys stayed focused and bucked up tonight," said a pleased Cherokee coach Neil Phipps. "We kind of changed our offense a little and the team responded well. We came off the football and limited some past mistakes. We used a little ball control, Luke and Marc kept us in good field position, and our line did some good blocking."
The Braves (1-3, 1-0 District) host undefeated Odebolt-Arthur/Battle Creek-Ida Grove (3-0, 1-0) Friday night for just their second home game.