"After what happened against Timber Creek, we came out determined to start out well," said Cherokee guard Lauren Schurr, who had a game-high 18 points yesterday. "We came out so pumped up for this game, and it's easy to get pumped up when you are playing at home."
The Chiefs, who led, 12-6, after the first quarter, began to shake the pesky Vikings late in the third quarter. In fact, it couldn't have gotten any later in that quarter since Schurr hit a desperation three-pointer from 30 feet at the buzzer, giving Cherokee a 36-27 lead heading into the final period.
"I knew I had to shoot it quickly, and I was lucky to see it go in," Schurr said.
While Schurr may have been aided by luck on that shot, there was plenty of skill in the other six that she hit. The 5-foot-10 senior is among the best pure shooters in South Jersey, and she connected on 7 of 10 field-goal attempts, including 4 of 7 from beyond the three-point arc.
Cherokee played without all-conference point guard Vania Tejada for an undisclosed reason, according to coach Judy Rekow. Junior twins Birgitta and Kerstin Wolfe scored 12 and 11 points, respectively, to aid the Chiefs' attack.
Eastern (0-2, 0-1) has lost to two quality teams, having fallen to Bishop Eustace, 45-31, on Friday. The Vikings look like a team that could vie for a Group 4 playoff spot if they learn to take care of the basketball. Against both Eustace and Cherokee, the Vikings committed 21 turnovers.
"I think we'll be fine when we cut down the turnovers and play with confidence," Eastern coach Joe Murphy said. "We're certainly getting the effort."
Most teams that play Eastern will be intent on stopping guard/forward Rose Katz, who, like Schurr, has a sweet stroke on the jumper when she gets things going.
Katz scored 17 points, all in the second half.
At halftime, Murphy instructed his team not to be so enamored with the three-point shot as the Vikings trailed, 17-11, and were just 2 for 10 from beyond the arc.
Katz, in particular, began shooting and hitting medium-range jumpers. In the second half, she shot 8 for 12.
Still, it wasn't enough to overcome Cherokee, which outscored the Vikings, 35-28, in the second half.
Contact staff writer Marc Narducci at 856-779-3225 or firstname.lastname@example.org.