These teams met in the 2005 and 2006 South Jersey Group IV finals. Cherokee won 32-25 in overtime in 2005 and Absegami in 27-26 in 2006.

They also met in a 2007 consolation game with Cherokee winning 31-14.

Absegami has struggled at times but still qualified for the playoffs for the first time since 2006. Injuries slowed the Braves.

Standout running back Ben Martin, who is headed to Rutgers University on an athletic scholarship, was slowed by an ankle injury.

But he is getting healthier. Martin carried 35 times for 162 yards in a 14-0 win over St. Augustine Prep on Oct. 23.

Absegami quarterback Rashad Kinlaw also is a dangerous runner.

Cherokee is the defending South Jersey Group IV champion and No. 3 in The Press' Elite 11. The Chiefs average 35.3 points per game. They are 28-3 since 2008.

Key players for Absegami: Ben Martin, RB; Rashad Kinlaw, QB; Trevon Chance, RB; Tom Macauley, LB.

Key players for Cherokee: Andrew Martin, QB, 70-of-112 for 1,024 yards and 13 touchdowns; Jonathan Bonilla, RB, 55 carries for 347 yards and seven touchdowns; Michael Zeuli, RB, 393 rushing yards and 121 receiving yards, 10 touchdowns;

Keys to victory: Absegami needs to control the ball and keep the Cherokee offense of the field. Some early success on both offense and defense would boost the Braves' confidence.


Who: Eighth-seeded Absegami (4-4) vs. top-seeded Cherokee (8-0)

When/where: 7 p.m. today

at Cherokee in Evesham Township

Admission: $3 for adults, $2 for seniors and students

What's next: Winner advances to next weekend's semifinals against the winner of tonight's other quarterfinal between fourth-seeded Egg Harbor Township and fifth-seeded Shawnee.