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To say that injuries are a part of the game would be an understatement for Jordan Cheater. After a standout freshman campaign on the basketball court for Central Sallisaw in their drive to the Area tournament, a broken leg as a sophomore forced Cheater to watch the Tigers compete only to encounter a second season-ending setback as a junior due to an ankle injury.
 
Some may think, it’s not worth the effort to try and comeback but for Cheater it’s the fuel in his drive to finish his high school career back at home on the basketball court. “I won’t lie, the setbacks were hard including missing the opportunity to play with my older brother Dillon,” explained the 2021 senior. “I just kept my head on track and refused to get down on myself.”
 
Cheater’s determination proves the character of the Central Sallisaw point guard; a commitment that draws praise from his coach, Brooks Cawhorn, Jr. “An exemplary young man, a solid student athlete,” described the Central Sallisaw basketball mentor. “Despite that two devastating injuries have taken his opportunity to play, Jordan has remained committed to being a solid student athlete and a difference maker for our team this season.”
 
From his childhood days playing on his first team, Brush Mountaineers at age eight, Cheater’s desire for success has developed into more than just becoming a good basketball player but also to be an example for others to follow, planning to pursue a career as a basketball coach. “Whatever I do and whatever challenge may arise, I follow my dad’s two words of advice, be patient,” Cheater explained. “I’ve said those words over and over again especially when I was hurt and so eager to get back on the court.”
 
It’s well known to those who know Cheater best that his favorite athlete is Michael Jordan. Known to his friends as J-money, the sharpshooting guard has “the touch” that seems to make the ball go in the bucket resulting in the sound of “swish.”
 
“I love to shoot the ball and watch it go in the net,” said the confident Tigers senior whose favorite subject is math who admits the two results just come easy.
 
As the 2020-21 season begins, Cheater and his teammates must encounter another opponent, the covid pandemic. “It’s another case of survival by being patient and doing the right things,” explained Cheater. “All I want for Christmas for me and my teammates is to play basketball and for things to go back to normal like before all of this craziness in 2020.”

And for the price paid by Jordan Cheater, such a gift would be the perfect reward.

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