Sixman fans were treated to another super football game Friday night when the Cherokee Indians took on the Zephyr Bulldogs. It was a fight to the finish, but the Bulldogs scored three unanswered touchdowns in the last 14 minutes of the game to top the Indians 70-84. While the Indians played a tremendous game, the mistakes that were made proved costly against Zephyr’s offensive powerhouse.
The opening play of the game saw Zephyr score on a 50 yard pass play and add the PAT to take a 0-8 lead. The Indians had an answer as Hector Jimenez threw to Josh Perry for a 45 yard TD on their first play from scrimmage. Dillon Epperson added the PAT to tie the score at 8-8. The rest of the 1st quarter was back and forth. Zephyr scored on a 25 yard pass play and kicked the PAT. Cherokee scored as Tucker Corsi ran in from the 1 yard line. Epperson added the PAT. Zephyr scored on a 55 yard run and kicked the PAT. With :35 remaining in the quarter, Nieves Solis scored on a 31 yard run for the Indians. The PAT failed. The quarter ended with Cherokee trailing 22-24.
The 2nd quarter started where the 1st left off. Zephyr scored on a 1 yard run. Solis blocked the PAT for the Indians to keep it at an 8 point lead for the Bulldogs. The Indians scored at the 4:40 mark, when Jimenez found the endzone from 1 yard out. Epperson added the kick and the score was tied at 30-30. 4:23 remaining in the half, Zephyr scored on a 50 yard pass play. The PAT failed. 4:03 remaining, Jimenez scored on a 45 yard run. Epperson added the PAT. This put the Indians ahead for the first time at 38-36. 3:48 remaining, Zephyr answered on a 60 yard run and added the PAT to regain the lead. 2:40 remaining in the half, Cherokee scored on a 25 yard pass from Epperson to Perry. Epperson kicked the PAT to put the Indians up 46-44. With 0:41 on the clock, Duncan Roberts came up with a mid-air Bulldog fumble caused by Corsi and returned it 60 yards for a TD. Epperson added the PAT and the Indians were up by 10, 54-44. Zephyr scored on a 25 yard run as time expired. The PAT was good and the half ended with the Indians hanging on to a slim, 46-44, lead.
1:45 into the 3rd quarter, Corsi scored on a 12 yard run and Epperson added the PAT to give the Indians another 10 point lead. Zephyr answered with a 30 yard TD pass play. Roberts blocked the PAT. The Indians were up by 4, 62-58. The Indians’ only turnover came 3 minutes 42 seconds into the 3rd quarter on an interception. Zephyr quickly converted that into a touchdown and PAT to grab the lead back at 62-66. With 5:11 remaining in the quarter, Corsi broke away from the field on a 35 yard TD run. Epperson added the PAT and the Indians were up 70-66. Zephyr scored next on a 40 yard pass play. The PAT was blocked by Corsi and Jesse Perez. Zephyr led 70-72. After holding the Indians on downs, Zephyr scored on a 2 yard pass play with 0:36 remaining in the quarter. The PAT failed. The Bulldogs had an 8 point lead going into the 4th quarter.
The 4th quarter was an amazing turnaround from the first 3 quarters. There were 20 touchdowns scored in the first 3 quarters. Zephyr scored the only touchdown of the 4th quarter on a 2 yard pass with 1:24 remaining in the game. The PAT was no good. Time ran out on the Indians before they could score.
Zephyr outscored the Indians 12 touchdowns to the Indians 9 touchdowns. The Indians were 8/9 on PAT kicks. Zephyr had 3 PATs blocked and 3 failed kicks out of 12 attempts.
The Indians will play Lohn Friday night for the Homecoming game. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. Come support the Indians and enjoy the Homecoming half-time events.