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March 19, 2015     Cheney Free Press
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March 19, 2015
 

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Thursday, March 19, 2015 Free Press Section 2 Page 1 + J + Photo by Paul Delaney It took a while to hear their name called but the wait was worth it for the Eastern Washington University men's basketball team which will face Georgetown tonight (March 19) in the opening round of the 2015 NCAA Basketball Tournament at the Moda Center in Portland. The Eagles earned the berth when they won the Big Sky Conference championship March 14 in Missoula, 69-65 over Montana. EWU comes back from 11 down in final six minutes to beat Montana, earns NCAA berth By PAUL DELANEY StaffReporter Exam week came a few days early for the Eastern Washington University men's basketball team and they aced all three of their huge tests. While other students - including the Eagle basketball players - were engaged in "finals" for winter quarter classes earlier this week, Eastern found different ways to win three games in the Big Sky Conference tournament and earn their passing grade. The reward; Eastern's first NCAA Tournament berth in 11 years following wins over Idaho, 91-83 March 12, Sac- ramento State by the same 91-83 score the following night, and capped with a 69-65 win over host Montana Saturday, March 14 on their home court at rocking Dahlberg Arena. The win over the Grizzlies, Eastern's fifth straight on the road, rewarded the Eagles (25-8) a No. 13 seed and a first-round contest tonight, March 19, at the Moda Center in Portland, Ore. versus Georgetown University (22-10) of Washington, D.C. at 7 p.m. The See EWU men page 5 basketball team potlight By PAUL DELANEY Staff Reporter For the longest time athletics at Eastern Wash- ington Un i- versity, and be- fore that Eastern Wasliffi~6nState College, and in any number of renditions of the school's name throughout history, have resided largely in the shadows on the collegiate landscape. Be it from down south in Pullman, or on Boone Avenue in Spokane, the Savages and Eagles were often athletics after- thoughts. No longer is that the case and the most recent example was the Eagles stealing a little of that March Madness love that, for the last 17 years at least, has been largely the sole property of the Gon- zaga Bulldogs. Eastern football has, for the nearly the past 20 Contributed photo EWU Athletics EWO's Big Sky champions celebrate in Missoula last Saturday, years, slowly climbed the rugged path to challenge WSU as a local football favorite. And now the Eagles can stand toe-to- toe both on the field, and in the battle for fan fol- lowing. This past weekend, Eastern basketball made a major headline and earned fan following ral- lying to beat Montana 69-65 at Dahlberg Arena in Missoula. They earned only the school's second berth in the NCAA tour- nament, are a No. 13 seed taking on No. 4 George- town in nearby Portland at the Moda Center. Down 11 points with just over six minutes to play still had the Eagles' Felix Von Hofe in some- what of a state of disbelief Sunday. "It wasn't looking too good toward the end," the native of Melbourne, Australian told EWU play-by-play broadcaster Larry Weir. "It will be a while until the full grav- ity of what we actually did." For Eastern's Tyler Harvey, hearing his team being announced also re- alized a longtime dream. See Crunch Time page 5 FROM STAFF AND NEWS SERVICE REPORTS Another basketball team with a solid pedi- gree stands in Eastern Washington's way in their second trip to the NCAA tournament. The No. 13-seeded Eagles face the No. 4 Georgetown Hoyas to- night (March 19) at the Moda Center in Port- land, Ore. The game between the Eagles and Hoyas will start at 6:57 p.m. and will be broadcast on truTV. It may also be heard live via radio on 700-AM ESPN with Larry Weir providing the play-by-play. But Sports Illustrat- ed is not all that im- pressed with the visi- tors from Washington, D.C. The magazine has time picked Eastern (26-8) as its "upset pick" in the South Region of the NCAA Tournament bracket. Eastern makes its second NCAA Tour- nament appearance in school history while Georgetown has been to 30 tournaments. Since reaching the 2007 Final Four, Georgetown has lost to double-digit seeds in each tournament it has made. The Hoyas lost to No. 10 Davidson in 2008, No. 14 Ohio in 2010, No. 11 VCU in 2011, No. 11 N.C. State in 2012 and No. 15 Florida Gulf Coast in 2013. To Eastern players the Hoyas are just an- other basketball team. "Our players are fearless and just want See Hoyas page 5 Photo by John McCallum Cheney forward/midfielder Alex Torres (right) battles a Ferris player for the ball. Blackhawks blanked in season opener By JOHN McCALLUM Editor As season openers go, there-were good things and bad things coming out of the Cheney High School boys' soccer game last Friday against Fer- ris at Spokane's Joe Albi Stadium. The bad was the Blackhawks lost, with Ferris getting a pair of second-half goals from Curt McCune en route to a 4-0 win. The Saxons out shot Cheney 11-2, with Blackhawks goalkeeper Austin Walker making four saves while Trevor Walker had one. The good news for See Hawks opener page 2 Cheney boys head coach Mark Kiver knows the pieces it's fitting them together that's the challenge By JOHN McCALLUM Editor Cheney High School boys soccer head coach Mark Kiver sees this year's team as a puzzle - the 500 or 1,000 piece variety. Open the box and dump the pieces out. Turn them over. Begin putting small sections together - a corner here, a portion of the bottom there, maybe a group that looks like it could be that barn in the box cover picture. "You know where they go, but you can't put the whole thing together yet," Kiver said. 0 Trevor Walker' 1 Austin Wallace 2 Tad Tinker 3 4 Andrew Tenney. 5 6 Oliver Smith 7 Spencer Yeager 8 Cruz Galm 9 Avery Dehner 10 Kelhy Holland 1t Trevor Baboock 12 Blake Smith 13 Matthew Dupler 14 15 Alex Torres 18 Adam Deutsch 19 William Bassedas Head Coach: Mark Kiver Assistant coaches Retan and Ryan Baldwin That's his 2015 Black- hawks. A lot of good pieces to choose from, but how they fit together will be a work in progress Kiver and his assistant coaches will have to fig- ure out. Some of those pieces are known. Cheney re- turns seven seniors from last year's 15-2-2 team 11 that won its third straight Great Northern League title, but fell short of defending its 2013 2A state title with a stunning opening round state play- off loss to Othello. First-team All-GNL defender Cruz Galm leads this returning class, and figures to be an anchor on the Blackhawks back line. Senior Spencer Yea- ger joins Cruz as a starter in the backfield, as will freshman Adam Deutsch, a player Kiver said can play anywhere and exem- plifies the tedm's blue-col- lar work ethic. Tad Tinker returns and will start at midfield defense. Sophomore Kel- by Holland also starts in the midfield, with senior Oliver Smith in at mid- field/forward along with junior transfer student from Barcelona, Spain, William Bassedas. Senior Avery Dehner returns after missing last year with injuries and will be called upon to be one of Chenev's attackers up front. Freshman Austin Wallace should see most of the minutes at goal- keeper, being asked to develop into the position under fire. Rounding out the squad are Trevor Walker, Noah Prophet, Andrew Tenney, Gabe Hemenway, Trevor Babcock, Blake See CHS soccer page 2