Oneida cornerback Tanner Sexton returns an interception to the 2-yard-line late in the first quarter of Thursday's game. (Independent Herald photo/Eddie Duncan. Click to purchase photo.)


Oneida jumped to a 3-touchdown first half lead, only to see Greenback storm back for a 42-38 win here Thursday evening.

In a matchup of top-five state-ranked opponents in a regionally-televised game that was marked by a festive atmosphere inside and outside the stadium at Oneida, the Indians (4-1) returned the opening kickoff 93 yards for a score and appeared headed for what would have been a major upset before the Cherokees (4-1) began to claw their way back into the game.

Greenback finished with 441 total yards to Oneida's 278, and 25 first downs to Oneida's 13.

But the Indians scored most of their points off of short fields, thanks to special teams play and turnovers.

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