The Lady Wolverines, who trailed by more than 10 points at times, pulled to within three points with 9 seconds remaining and had possession of the ball, but they turned it over before even getting a shot off.
“That’s a classic region game and county game for us,” Cherokee coach Matt Cates said. “Woodstock made some plays down the stretch.”
Cherokee (22-1, 12-0) scored just one field goal — by Audrisha Williams — in the fourth quarter, but it did just enough on the free-throw line. The Lady Warriors shot 12-for-22 in the period.
“We made some free throws and held on,” Cates said. “We were tired, but that’s no excuse. You have to perform.”
Cherokee was playing without starting center Aunesha Williams, who missed the game due to illness.
Woodstock (16-6, 9-2) led by as many as seven points early in the game, but the lead dwindled by the end of the first quarter as it was up just 11-9. The Lady Wolverines then went cold in the second quarter and trailed 24-21 at the half.
Things didn’t improve for Woodstock after the break, as Cherokee’s offense began to thrive.
The Lady Warriors’ Sara Byers scored 10 of her 15 points in the period.
Woodstock scored just 12 points in the quarter — most by Brianna Lakes. She scored 10 of the 12 points, with eight coming at the free-throw line. Kennedy Montgomery made a pair of free throws.
Woodstock got aggressive in the fourth quarter, drawing fouls and putting Cherokee into the double bonus with 5:55 left in the fourth quarter.
The Lady Wolverines took advantage of the situation, with Lakes going 10-for-11 from the line in the quarter. Montgomery also made a pair of 3-pointers as Woodstock closed the gap.
A 3-pointer by Amanda Oshogbor, followed by a Lakes field goal, cut the Cherokee led to 58-53 with 2:08 remaining.
The Lady Warriors ran down the clock down to 40 seconds on their next possession before the teams traded free throws to set up the final possession.
Lakes led Woodstock with 28 points, Clara Young scored 11 and Montgomery finished with 10 — eight of which came in the fourth quarter.
Kiana Howell led Cherokee with 19 points and was 11-for-17 from the free-throw line. Byers finished with 15 points, while Morgan Darby scored seven.