EMMETSBURG - Marc Husman sank two critical free throws in the closing seconds, and Lane Peterson knocked down two more in the final seconds to lead the Cherokee Braves to a hard-fought 50-43 Lakes Conference basketball victory over Emmetsburg here Friday night.
Eric Wilkie paced Cherokee's scoring with 18 points, including 15 in the first half as the Braves battled the hosts bucket for bucket in the entertaining first two periods. Stetson Dagel added 10 points for the winners, including eight of those in the second half and a gigantic inside basket in the final minute that kept the Braves in the lead and set the table for the Husman and Peterson free throw heroics. Husman scored eight, and Zac Smith seven for the winners.
Eric Drost paced the E-Hawks with 16 points, and Michael Pugh added 13. Emmetsburg's leading scorer Jake Jackson, averaging 16 points per game, was limited to eight, thanks to the outstanding defense of Cherokee's Husman.
Nathaniel Morgan led Cherokee on the boards with seven rebounds, and Dagel and Smith yanked down five each. The busy Morgan also led the winners in steals with three, and assists with three.
"It's nice to win," said Cherokee coach bob Lee. "We're excited for the guys. They work hard through football and basketball seasons and its nice to see them rewarded for their efforts.
"Marc Husman did a super job on defense. His motor never stops. We're progressing and moving in the right direction. We showed poise when the game was on the line. That's a very good sign."
The Braves host dangerous Spencer Tuesday night and play at Alta-Aurelia Thursday night, before traveling to Hull Western Christian Friday.