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September 24, 2009     Cheney Free Press
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is- Thursday, September 24, 2009 SPO'RTS Free Press Section 2 Page 1. Blackhawks hammer Rogers 42-13 for Homecoming win Photo by John McCallum Cheney's Connor Molter-Gaddy (right) and Oimmie Phillips (51) swarm to the tackle of Rogers' running back Justin Meusy. Eastern 'D' helps dig up wnn over :Northern Colorado By PAUL DELANEY SFaff Reporter When people talk about the Eastern Washington University football team, the offense tends tog earn the biggest share of the attention. The defense and special teams, however, are making their case for earning the top spot on the marquee lately. Forcing turnovers that led to two touchdowns, and employ- ing effective use of punts to pin Northern Colorado deep in their own territory, Eastern scored a 16-0 Big Sky Conference .victory at Woodward Field last Saturday. The shutout was the first at home for the Eagles since 1983. The Bears turned flaebalt over four times, two of them leading to Eastern scores on a bluster and sometimes rainy afternoon at Woodward Field. The Eagles won their second game in three non- conference outings. UNC is now 1-2 overall, 0-1 in the BSC. Eastern, which rebounded from a 59-7 pummeling at the hands of the California Golden Bears last week, stumbled along most of the afternoon. Quarterback Matt Nichols was sacked an uncharac- teristic four times by a pressing UNC defense. The Eagles did take advantage of the short field the Bears left them to score two first half touch- downs. Nichols found tight end Nathan Overbay for a leaping 5-yard catch with 1:21 to play in the first quarter. That was set up by safety Kevin Hatch's interception of Bears' quar- terback Bryan Waggener's pass at the UNC 39. TaiwanJones' 34-yard dash down the sidelines set up the score. The point-after was wide. UNC's Ryan Lutz then lost the ball on a punt return at the six with 2:24 to play in the half. The fumble was recovered by Nick Ra- mos and three plays later, Nichols found Aaron Boyce for a 5-yard touchdown with 53 seconds to go in the half. Jones led the Eagles on the ground with 95 net yards while See 'D' keys win page 12 Cheney opens league play Friday night at Medical Lake By JOHN McCALLUM Editor Cheney's game with Rogers Friday night may have been billed as Homecoming, but in reality, it was the Alex Adams Show. The senior tailback rushed for 145 yards and scored four touchdowns, the last a 94-yarder in the fourth quarter that put the icing on the Blackhawks" 42-13 win over the visiting Pirates. The victory was Cheney's first of the season, bringing their record to 1-2 heading into this Friday's Great Northern League opener at Medi- cal Lake. "It was a break out game for him," Cheney head coach Jason Williams said of Adams" perfor- . mance, which also included 145 yards receiving on three catches. And if Adams had a break out game, the same could also be said for his teammates. The Hawks offense found a rhythm, breaking up an efficient rtm- ning. game with some timely passing, and the defense pretty much kept Rogers" option attack in check. 'The game wasn't without adversity however. Cheney senior quarterback DeAngelo Jones left the ' game early in the second quarter after tweaking his knee, and ,'sat out the remainder of the game as a precaution. Sophomore Ben Bissel stepped in and guided the Hawks fo four touchdowns, including twoLTD tosses to Adams. As in their previous two games it was the Hawks who scored first, thanks to a turnover. Connor Puyear fell On a fumble on Rogers' first possession at the Pirates 35, and three plays later, Jones scampered 25 yards for the 6-0 lead. Cheney made it 14-0 with an 86-yard, seven- play drive, capped by Jones" 25-yard TD pass to running back Bryce Crooks, and a pass to Adams for the two-point conversion. The Pirates got on the board with a 10-play drive to start the second quarter, with Jordan Burns scoring from 15 yards out with 8:15 to play before half. But from then on it was pretty much Cheney's show, with Adams in the lead role. Bissel guided the Hawks on a time-consum- ing, 11-ptay,.56-yard drive, Adams sealing the deal with a 5-yard TD run with 2:16 to go. Rogers answered with a drive to the Hawks 33, but turned the ball over on downs, and one play later, Bissell hit Adams on a short pass over the middle, what Williams called an "88 See Homecoming page 12 Medical Lake 'Powers' past Eagles 32-20 Cardinals find new force in ground game Photo by John McCaUum Cheney forward Kellie Zakrewski battles two West Valley players for the ball in the second half of last Thursday's 3-0 Blackhawks road win. Soccer Hawks improve to 3-1 By JOHN McCALLUM Editor What a difference a year makes. After the first four games in 2008, the Cheney girls" soccer team was 1-3, suffering key Great Northern League losses at Pullman and West Valley and an 8-0 embarrassment against Greater Spokane League 4A soccer power University. A year later, the Blackhawks still have a loss at Pullman, a 1-0 shootout last Tuesday. But thanks to sterling defensive play, and se- nior forward Kellie Zakrewski, Cheney enters week three with, a 3-1 mark, 1-1 in the GNL, and enjoying its first ever win over U-Hi. Tuesday's matchup with the Greyhounds (4-0, 2-0) went as Cheney head coach Robyn Smith expected. Both teams played each other evenly, although the Hawks missed on a couple scoring opportunities. Two Cheney shots ricocheted off the goal posts, and another apparent score by Za- krewski was negated by an offsides call. The teams ended 80 minutes of regulation and 10 minutes of overtime scoreless, and the Hounds finally won in a 3-2 shootout. Zakrewski and Molly Gough netted Cheney's only shootout scores. Both teams had seven shots on goal with Hawks goal- keeper Nora Ifft making five saves. Smith said they saw things at Pullman the team needed to work on, using the loss as a "teaching moment" and making adjustments. The adjustments paid off Thursday at West Valley. Cheney spread the Eagles (2-1, 1-1) out defensively, and applied more intense offensive pressure early on. Cheney possessed the ball most of the first half, outshooting the Eagles 7-3, The Hawks scored in the 21st minute when midfielder Alyssa Kirstein floated a shot over four Ea- gles defenders. Zakrewski tracked it down, dribbled near the 6-yard box and fired past goalkeeper Karina Carpenter for the goal. In the second half it was the Eagles with the early offensive pressure, missing with sev- eral good shots on goal. The Hawks defense cleared the ball on other opportunities, and Ifft made a diving stop of a close-in shot by West Valley's DeeDee Garbe which swung the game's momentum briefly back Cheney's way. On the possession following Ifft's -save, Kirstein again found Zakrewski who sent home a goal from just outside the penalty kick mark in the 51st minute. Seven minutes later, Zakrewski tracked down a loose ball on the right side of the net about 10 yards out, and dribbled to the middle inside the 18-yard box. Three defenders, including Carpenter who had come out of goal to challenge; deflected the senior forward's shot. Knocked to the ground, and with Eagles lying about her, Zakrewski got up and flicked the ball into the goal to ice Cheney' s 3-0-shutout win. Cheney outshot West Valley 13-9, with Ifft making seven saves. ! See Soccer Hawks page 3 By PAUL DELANEY Staff Reporter The Medical Lake Cardinals wanted to close out the non-league portion of their football schedule on a high note so they turned on the power. Ben Powers that is. The previously unknown 6- foot, 190-pound back is no longer a secret after he reeled off 193 yards on 36 carries, scored three times, recovered a key fumble and an on-side "kick in the Cards' 32-20 win over Lakeside of Nine Mile in Suncrest this past Friday. The victory gave Medical Lake a 2-1 record as they prepare to open Great Northern League play and face a well-stocked Cheriey team  at home on Friday at 7 p.m. The Cards have back-to-back wins for the first time since the final two games of the 2003 season when they closed out an undefeated GNL season at 7-0. That was also the last time Medical Lake beat Cheney, back when the Blackhawks were members of the old Frontier League. Medical Lake head coach Wes Hobbs was aloof when asked where his new weapon came from. "What Powers kid?" "He's a tough nut," Hobbs said of the junior who first played last week against Chewelah. "We've always had him," the coach said, but circumstances dictated he get his chance. The Cardinals had a number of kids out due to illness. That included Jarrod Swanson who the coach said, "is a big part of our offense." "So Ben got his shot and we told him he better be prepared to carry 30 times," Hobbs said. Powers obviously did more than expected in his real unveiling. "He played hard and took a lot of shots," the coach said. Powers got a good amount of his yards on second efforts. Powers was a rarity among his teammates in that he played just offense last Friday. But that will not last long for the shorthanded Cardinals who dressed just 28 players. "Right now he's been a See Cards win page 12 Fortunes may slowly be changing for Medical Lake's football program Cheney game will present a huge test Hobbs' Cardinals By PAUL DELANEY S taff Reporter Two wins do not a season make when a team plays 10 games. But it is certainly a good start when one considers the recent past for Medical Lake football. When Medical Lake came away from Suncrest last Friday following a 32-20 victory over Lakeside there was an exciting buzz in the air that has not been present lately. Winning every once in a while will do that. Winning two in a row for the first time in six years...well- who knows? Guess we'll see on Fri day when the Cards try some home cooking as they attempt to score a huge upset against their West Plains neighbor, Cheney. Even just giving followers that whiff of a potential victory can breed excitement. But so can a coach who has his players competing at a dif- ferent level of intensity. Whether it was the previous week's 40-22 win over Chewelah or just a beautiful late summer evening, several dozen Medical Lake fans made the drive and were scattered along the side- lines behind the bench. The lawn chairs and blankets were spread out along the running track. Fans were rewarded by the exciting breakout performance by Ben Powers. His 36 carries, 193 yards, three touchdowns, plus both a fumble and onside kick recovery are things players generally just dream of. Now maybe Powers can someday tell his grandchildren about it as they gather 'round his La- Z-Boy. It was far more than Powers - who ironically got his shot at a start when sickness visited the Medical Lake football locker room- that have people talking up the team. Even with an injury to a key lineman, Medical Lake.stayed on a roll. Dean Petersen, who Cards head coach Wes Hobbs called "one of our better guards," went out early in the first half with an injury of undisclosed nature. "The loss of one kid can impact our scheme," Hobbs said. But with backup from Dylan Paulus; Medical lake didn't seem to miss a beat as they rolled up 339 rushing yards. That's something that could not have been said in the past few years. The Cardinals fought off more than illness and injury Friday. After they jumped to an 18-0 lead early in the third quarter, Medi- cal Lake faced - and passed - a big test. It wasn't one that tested their physical abilities, but rather the mental side. That of not letting a little adversity turn a game, because it certainly could have. "A touchdown by an opponent should not be the thing that deflates you," Hobbs explained. "On de- fense, we're going to give up some big runs. You just get the ball on the ground, then you huddle up and it's a new play." That's a tough thing to get en- grained, Hobbs said. "It's never been done before. We hung in there and in the end when we needed a play we got one." When it was over, Hobbs asked, "Was that Friday night football or what? It doesn't get any better than that." That good time feeling Hobbs took away from the game may be fleeting because reality really hits in a big way this Friday when the Cards host the Hawks in the teams' Great Northern League opener. In Biblical terms, Friday's game is a bit of a David versus Goliath match-up. The Blackhawks will likely suit double the players the See Crunch Time page 2 5,>/ 4-