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April 28, 2011     Cheney Free Press
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Thursday, April 28, 2011 Free Press Section 3 I I i Coach is seeing solid progess out c,f Medical Lake track team By PAUL DELANEY Staff`Reporter Medical Lake head track coach Gene Blankenship will be the first to tell you that the team concept comes first. But as he works to help rebuild the program in his first year on the job, Blan- kenship is quite content to see the solid individual efforts visible lately. That&apos;s his foundation for the future. The Cardinals hosted a Great Northern League meet last .Thursday with East Val- ley on a brutally cold and windy day with the boys falling 123-18 and 117.5-27.5 in girls' competition. Saturday Medical Lake traveled to Compete in the Quincy Invite and while the Cardinals still finished well down in team points - the boys were ninth out of 18 teams and girls 15th of 17- the weather was vastly improved over Thursday. The team earned 27 personal records Thursday, despite terrible weather with strong, cold winds and intermittent snow. Shelby Murray won the 100-meter dash by 3/10ths of a second over the Knights' Shayla McClure in one of two event wins on the afternoon. Murray was also the lead runner for the 4x100 relay team that finished 3.2 seconds off the pace. "She had a good day," Blankenship said of Murray. Sarah Vincent collected a victory in the longjump with a leap of 14 feet, 1-inch and was second in the triple-jump at 30 feet, 3-inches. Luke Alvarado was the lone entrant and won in the 3,200 meters. East Valley held out some of their distance people in order to save them for last Saturday's Mooberry Relays. All things considered Blankenship said his team competed well in the East Valley meet. "They had probably three times as many kids as we had," he said, explaining some of the disparity in the team scores. Aside from the two top finishers, Xyomara Ramos and Alyssa Mayfield were second and third respectively in the high jump with equal 4 foot, 3-inch final-round / efforts• Libbie Klettke was runner-up in the javelin, throwing 93-1. Madison reenhall was runner-up in the 110-meter hurdles. "Maddie is so dedicated and works so hard," Blanken- • ship said of the junior performer. "She is so consistent., Alvarado' solo finish in .the 3,200 meter run was thenly_ Cardinals win for the boys against East Valley. Nick Murray was runner-up in the 200 meter run. "He works hard and gives every effort each time he goes out." "Clay Watters is probably our most consistent performer," Blankenship said to describe the junior who was runner up in both the 110 and 300 meter hurdles. "We kind of think he's got an outside chance to get to regionals." Teams get two automatic entries in the districts, May 12-13 at West Valley. Junior Peter Loeffler, Blankenship's No. I distance runner, has been hurt, his coach said. "We're testing him and hoping he's going to get healed up." "Another kid who if he can get off to a good jump, which he should, and a chance to get to regionals or state, is Matt Friddle," Blankenship said. Friddle did not jump against EV because of a ba hamstring. At Quincy, Murray was third in the 400 and Josh Stebbins fourth in the 1;600. "The main thing about that one was his (Stebbins') previous PR was 5 minutes, 9-seconds; he ran 4:57," Blankenship said. "That was a big jump, I was really.excited about that one." Watters was third in the 300 meter hurdles at 43.seconds fiat. "That was a major PR for him," Blankenship said.. Blankenship also pointed out the effort of one ofhis fres .hman runners."Although she finished 12th, Catie Sweet PR'd by almost 20 seconds in the 1,600. "In all honesty we only competed with 16 kids on Saturday and 10 of them had PRs," Blankenship said. "Our whole goal this season was see how much we can improve the kids. Right now I would Page 5 like to say we need to focus on the team because I'm a lot more into teams than individuals." But as a team Blankenship said Medi- cal Lake will not be competitive until they drop down to the 1A level something that will have to wait for a year. The Cardinals are at Cheney toda 3) at 3:30 p.m. and face West Valley at Clarkston next Wednesday• Medical Lake will also compete in the Newport Relays on May 7. Blankenship said he intends to take the entire team to Newport and "plans to try to win it," noting of course, "There are a lot of small schools there." With his first season as head coach winding down, Blankeship is already looking forward to 2012. H e loses just one senior girl, Katy Savage, and five boys: Nick Murray, Josh Stebbins, Brian Williams, Johnathan Kramer and Matt Friddle. Paul Delaney can b.e reached at pdelaney@cheneyfreepress.com. Photo by Paul Delaney Medical Lake's Ryan Bymes (15) tried, but failed to beat a throw to the plate last Wednesday at East Valley. Medical La e battles back into contention By PAUL DELANEY Staff`Reporter About the time it seemed as though losing seven of eight games had cast Medical Lake's baseball team out of post-season, they turned around and won their next three Great Northern League games renewing playoff aspirations. The Cardinals completed a 3-0 week starting with a 16-11 win in the first game of a doubleheader last Monday at East Valley. Snow forced postponement of a second game to Wednesday where the Cards took a 7-2 victory. Sand- wiched in between was a 7-6 win over Deer Park last Tuesday• The mini-streak improved the Cards GNL record to 5-8 in the GNL and 6-8 overall and, temporarily at least, in possession of fourth place. As the second game of their postponed Monday doubleheader resumed Wednesday with the Cardinals carrying over a 3-0 lead, Josh Harbolt made it 1-0 after sin- gling and later scoring on a Ryan Wagner sacrifice. Three singles and a throwing error in the third allowed Mike Tripp and Wagner to score for a 3-0 lead. Medical Lake added another run and led 4-2 in the sixth when Chase Talley singled and scored on an Adam Paulson single. Medical Lake used a combina- tion of a pair of walks to Harbolt and Christian Voitik, plus singles by Wagner, Talley, Ryan Byrnes and Zeb Klemke to add three critical insurance runs in the seventh. Voitik picked up the game in the fourth inning from starter Paulson and collected the win, working two innings before being relieved by Harbolt who got the Knights 1-2-3 in the seventh. In Tuesday's game Medical Lake rallied from a 3-2 deficit by scoring four runs in the bottom of the fifth as Tripp got on board with a Deer Park throwing error• Harbolt doubled and Wagner singled to score a pair. He scored on a Talley home run for a 6-3 lead• Medical Lake would make it 7-3 with a run in the bottom of the sixth when Eric Collins reached on an error and later scored on a Voitik single. Harbolt came on in relief of Wagner in the sixth and had to withstand a 3-run Deer Par k rally before getting a force out at sec- ond and a fly out to end thegame. Wagner got the win. Now if they can only finc a dry field. A Thursday doublel eader was called after three initings, rescheduled for this past Mq today but rained out again. The Cards will host Pullman in a d(,uble- header Friday beginning at . p.m. and the rescheduled Pu lman game was still up in the a as of press time. Paul Delaney can be reached at pdelaney@c. ess.com. EWU scrimmage continued from page 1 Cory Mitchell added catches of 27 and 42 yards in the scrimmage, • he was there and making plays, giving him 13 grabs for 221 yards We expect him to make a ton of and three touchdowns in three plays.next year for us•" spring scrimmages thus far• Bo Levi Mitchell completed "Obviously, it's fun for them," six of his last eight passes to fin- Baldwin said. "Cory has been ish 6-of-12 for 100 yards. He led playing really well. We have some the offense on a seven-play, 45- young wide receivers who have yard touchdown drive, capped played a lot of football, but after by a 10-yard touchdown pass our top four, we have another to David Miles. He later led a three or four that haven't played four-play, 70-yard scoring drive, much. The good thing is that it capped by a 23-yard TD pass to hasn't been just one scrimmage -- Cory Mitchell, who also had a he's been consistent in a lot of live 46-yard catch from his brother situations in practices and scrim- on the drive, mages. He's made plays and has been productive, and I'm excited to see that out of Cory." Sophomore Marie Brown led Eastern's running game with 28 yards on four carries, and an- other sophomore, University of Washington transfer Demitrius Bronson, added 19 yards on sev- en rushes. Ashton Clark caught three passes for 22 yards. The Eagles have today!ltlme TBA) before ending spring drills with the annual Red- White game at 2 p.m. Saturday at Roos Field. The scrimmaee • i will be televised live regionauv by SWX. ML softball hangs on in battle for post-season By PAUL DELANEY Medical Lake's softball team seems to be a group with two identities. There's the one that pounded out 13 runs on 13 hits and com- mitted just one error on defense in recording a 13-7 win over Clarkston in the opening game of a Great Northern League doubleheader last Thursday at Reinking Field. Or there's the Cardinal team thit booted the ball five limes in the nightcap of a 16-5 loss to the Bantams, dropping Medical Lake to 3-11 in GNL play and 4-12 over- all with key games upcoming that will determine whether there's a post-season future ahead. Medical Lake faced West Val- ley this past Tuesday and host Pullman (0-13, 0-14) today at 2 p.m. in the first game of a double- header. They finish with a single game next Tuesday when they host Cheney at 4 p.m. i CHS soccer If the Cards can have the suc- cess they did against Pullman when they beat the Greyhounds 9-3 on April 8 they'll enhance their chances of making the post-season for the first time in a number of years. "We get in there who knows," head coach Higgins said. "We've played with everybody, there's some hope." Higgins reminded, "We took a game off East Valley who was the second place team, We took a game off Clarkston which was the third place team and we played Cheney tough so we're close, we just haven't put it all together yet." They certainly seemed to come close to having a complete effort in the opener versus Clarkston. "The first game we kind of out hit them and didn't have any errors," Higgins said. "If we don't have any errors we can play with most teams." Medical Lake fell behind 3-0 after one ihning but rallied to score nine runs in the next three innings. Becky Troutt and Kat Campbell each had three hits with Amelia Cook and Kelsey Fisk adding two hits apiece. Fisk also dubbed a tri- ple and a double while Nikki King and Becky Blakely each doubled. Kelby Wegner went the distance on the mound for the win. In the second game the Cardi- nals stayed with Clarkston through three innings, trailing 7-5, but then the Bantams struck for six runs in the top of the fifth to blow the game open. Cook connected for a pair of hits in the second game, induding a double. Campbell also doubled. Last Tuesday at home against Deer Park (6-6, 7-7) the Lady Stags broke things open late, scoring five runs in the foui"ch to go ahead 6-0 and adding another four in the top ofthe sixth. Blakely collected a pair of hits, including a double, for the Cards.. Paul Delaney can be reached at pdess.com. continued from page 1 minute. Cheney had some scoring opportunities near the end of the half, but couldn't convert and in the second half, Prince again connected, assisted by Zach Hess, tying the game in the 62nd minute. In overtime the Cardinals kept the pressure up, particularly in the second five-minute frame where Kiver said they were the dominant team. The Blackhawks forced the shootout, missing their first pen- alty kick but hitting their next 11 to prevail 11-10• Scoring in the shootout for Cheney were Kyle Bustamante, Seipp, Micah WeUer, Jose Ferrari, Jacob Mager, Skillingstad, Dimitriy Topov, Fitzner, Trevan Estrellado and Carson Lamphere with what proved to be the game winner. Medical Lake out shot Cheney in regulation 12-9 with Blackhawks' goalkeepers John Gingrich and Joe Scott making three saves each. Tuesday on Senior Day the Blackhawks played a Clarkston team that didn't match up talent- wise. Despite the mismatch Kiver said felt Cheney played one of its better games, spreading the field, creating opportunities and mount- ing a balanced attack, evidenced by the scoring. Estrellado got the Blackhawks on the scoreboard with a solo goal in the 30th minute, adding a second goal three minutes later for a 2-0 lead. Senior forward Xavier Day, in his third game back from injury, got his first goal of the season, assisted by Lamphere, in the 36th minute. In the second half the Black- hawks got goals from Ferrari, Daniel Bogart, Day, and a pair by Skillingstad and senior James Borchers for a 9-0 lead before the Bantams spoiled the shutout with a score in the 76th minute. The highlights, Kiver said, were the goals by Botchers, a perennial junior varsity player brought up for the day. The goals, in the 70th and 72nd minute, were the first high school scores for the senior, thrilling everyone, including the players. • "We thought we were going to have to give him oxygen on the field he was so excited," Kiver said. "That's something that's going to stick with all of us." Currently fourth, Cheney has two games left, Tuesday against league-leader East Valley and Thursday at Deer Park• A win • would jump the Blackhawks over third-place Medical Lake, which wrapped up its schedule Monday, and two could possibly send them over second-place Pullman, who has West Valley remaining• "I think we're doing alright," Kiver said. "The guys know the task at hand." John McCallum can be reached at jmac@cheneyfreepress.com. • 9 Mttchell s 116 W. lst,Cheney, WA o 235-4222 Prices Good Through May 3, 2011 *Proudly serving Tuily's Coffee ,-, . r,,  .... ,....n.',,,*.'rc'n,,rm. rlflllllrllllllllrlllltllllllI'lllllillllllfl "1 7 I'] I I I IINI/TIRIIllllllrlllGll I1 r I ,1 ,rr ', ll<lri'irrl" i i I