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December 24, 2015     Cheney Free Press
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Section 2 December 24, 2015 Cheney Free Press II FROM STAFF AND NEWS SERVICE REPORTS Cooper Kupp might just have to have an addition to his t ophy case whenhe has his first house. Eastern Washington University's sure-handed junior wide receiver secured arguably the pinnacle offensive honor in the Football Championship Subdivi- sion when on Monday, Dec. 21 it was announced he had won the 2015 Walter Payton Award. The Payton will be handed off to Kupp Jan. 8, 2016, on the eve of the FCS cham- pionship game in Frisco, Texas: Kupp is also a candidate for the Offensive Player of the Year presented by the FCS Athletic Director's Association with that winner Medical Lake's Cole Soliday battles a Deer League basketball game. also announced Jan. 8. Kupp becomes the third Eastern player to win the Payton, given each year to the top offensive player in FCS football. Quar- Cooper Kupp terbacks Erik Meyer collected the award in 2005 and Bo Levi Mitchell was the recipi- ent in 2011. He becomes only the second wide receiver to win the Payton Award, with Brian Finneran from Villanova winning in 1997. Kupp also became just the second wide receiver in 42 years to win the Big Sky Conference Offensive MVP Award. Contributed photo from Deer Park Tribune Park player in last Friday's Northeast A In 2015, Kupp led FCS in five cat- egories: receptions, receptions per game (10.4), reception yards (1,642), reception yards per game (149.3) and touchdown receptions (19). Kupp has previously been honored as a first team selection on All-America teams announced by the American Football Coaches Association, STATS, Associated Press, the FCS Athletic Director's Association, Walter Camp Football lhoundation and College Sports Madness. The FCS ADA selected him as its recipient of the FCS Wide Receiver of the Year and he was also a first team Academic All-American in 2015. A 2012 graduate of Davis High School in Yakima, Wash., Kupp's 2015 By PAUL DELANEY Staff Reporter The Medical Lake boys team dosed out the 2015 portion of their basketball season with a check mark on one of its major goals for the season. The Cardinals scored a pair of easy wins 66-34 over Chewelah Dec. 15 and 68-40 at Deer Park Dec. 18 and ran their Northeast A League record to 3-0. Between those two games, Northwest Christian picked up an easy nonleague victory 76-56 Dec. 16. "Our focus is league games so we're happy to take care of that," Medical Lake head coach Arnold Brown said. "It was a great way to go into our break." The Cardinals head to the Christmas break with a 4-2 record. Brown hoped the smackdown his 'team experienced last Wednesday in Colbert left a mark. And it certainly ap- peared to in lime for their meeting with Deer Park. "The Northwest Christian game really prepared us for that one," Brown said. "We had a wake up call of how to play on the road, we can't let teams get going," Brown said. It was the Cardinals that were in high- gear from the opening tip. "We came out defensively really well," Brown said. "I want to say it was 8-7 and we went on a nine, 10-0 run." And then the "D" really clamped down shutting out the Stags 20-0 in the second quarter. Brown said the news of the shutout quarter filtered in but he did not realize it at the time, as Medical Lake took a 43-14 lead to the dressing room at the half. After the break the Cardinals added season included a Big Sky Conference record of 114 receptions. In just three years, Kupp already ranks second in FCS history in touch- down catches (56, two behind the re- cord), second in reception yards (4,764, 486 behind the record) and fourth in receptions (311, 84 behind the record). Kupp announced Nov. 30 that he will return to Eastern in 2016 for his senior season, forgoing the spring NFL draft. The Payton Award is selected by Mickey Charles LLC of www.FC- SAwards.com. The awards program for the NCAA Football Championship was founded by Charles and The Sports Network. , more insult with another offensive push, Brown said. "I think (all together) it was a 30-0 run." That's exactly how the week began for Medical Lake as they hosted Chewelah. "We came out and jumped on them right away," Brown said. "It was our last home game (for 2015) and it gave the people that were there a little glimpse of how we can be." "The biggest thing was our defense," Brown said. Medical Lake opened the game with a 14-0 lead as Cory Wagner played a big part on offense. "Cory really got going; he had 20 at halftime." Wagner was 10 of 12 from the field. Jaelon Stith was the other Cardinal in double figures with 10 points. Cole Soliday was a point away from a double-double with nine points and 11 rebounds, plus seven assists. Soliday, has been putting up -- make that hauling down - plenty of rebounds. "He had 11 one game, 13 one game," Brown said of Soliday. "He just kind. of finds the ball." Trenten Garza's 3-pointer in the fourth pushed the Cardinals' lead to 31 points at 54-23. Brown said he substituted freely in the second half. "We don't try to run scores up," Brown said. The NWC game was to have been played earlier but due to the lack of prac- tices, fallout from the Nov. 17 windstorm, it was rescheduled for last week. "We were in it for a while," Brown said. The teams were tied at 18 after the first quarter. But the Crusaders outscored the Cardinals 24-14 in the second and went to the locker room leading 42-32. "They got hot, they made about 10 3s in the game," Brown said. "That second See ML boys page 3 revor a Cheney, ML earn swimming wins By AL STOVER Staff Reporter The Cheney High boys swim team rebounded last week to pick up a couple of wins at home, Dec 15, de- feating Prosser (133-18) and Grandview (113-43). Individual places from the meet were not available as of press time. Head coach Jennifer bco quali for Hochwalt explained that there were "four meets going on at once." The other two duals she referred to were ones featuring a Medical Lake High swim team, comprised of the athletes that practice with Cheney, defeating Prosser 45-21, and losing to Grandview, 65-31. Highlights from the meet for Cheney include Trevor Babcock qualifying for state in the 100-yard freestyle in 50.92 seconds. Babcock also finished the 100 backstroke in 1:01.99. Scott Nadeau completed the 100 breaststroke in 1.:07.68, less than one second away from the state-qualifying time (1:06.90) and the 500 freestyle in 5:30.66. Matt Christianson finished the 200 freestyle in 2:30.95. Spencer Hagel completed the 200 individual medley in 2:44.63 and the 100 butterfly in 1:13.73. Jacob Devine clocked in a 29.42 in the 50 freestyle. On the Medical Lake side, in OOf Isaac Outheuthapanya finished the 200 freestyle in 2:40.45. C.J. Krieger completed the 50 freestyle in 26.07 and the 500 freestyle in 6:02.02. Tyler Edison finished the 100 breaststroke in 1:45.25. In relay events, Devine, Noah Prophet, Tanner Gilling- ham and Elijah Walker finished the 200 medley relay in 2:23.13 and the 400 freestyle relay in 4:01.70. Babcock, Christianson, Nadeau and Joel Rice clocked in a 1:46.52 in the 200 freestyle. yle For Medical Lake, Outheu- thapanya, Krieger, Edison and Brayden Burress finished the 200 medley relay in 2:17.63 and the 200 freestyle in 1:57.59. "I was happy with how the swimmers performed," Hochwalt said. "I'm excited to see what they can do after Christmas break." The Cheney team begins 2016 with a meet in Pullman, Jan. 5. Al Stover can be reached at al@cheneyfreepress.com [e groove By AI STOVER Staff Reporter Christmas came early for Seattle Seahawks fans. Despite a rocky 44 start to the 2015 regular season, the Seahawks bounced back to a 9-5 record, in- cluding the recent 30-13 win over the Cleveland Browns, to clinch a wild card spot in the playoffs and make their fourth straight postseason ap- pearance. Sure, seattle hasfftbeen dominant for the major- ity of the season like they were in the last two years, butmany to contract issues but later One facet of the team should but let's not forget wouldar- returned to the team. Of that has grown over the how the O-line has stepped gue that course, who can forget season is the offensive line, up to protect him. As a all they wide rei:eiver Doug Bald- which had a combination coach once told me, the needed win, who has caught 10 of rookies and veterans players on offensive line to do was get to the post- passing touchdowns in the coming into the season, are the "unsung heroes" season, last four games. The O-Line had taken their of the game. The Seahawks had their One Seahawk that fans licks early on but were able Seattle's running game fair share of drama at the had high expectations for to adjust. The bye week has had its fair of ups and start of the season. Quar- was tight end Jimmy Gra- gave Seattle's offense time downs. Running back terback Russell Wilson, ham, who the team ac-to regroup. Marshawn Lynch started who signed a four-year quired from New Orleans. Fans and writers are the first six games before deal with the Seahawks Grahamhad 48 receptions talking about Wilson's be.ing sidelined for sports worth $87.6 million, now for 605 yards and two"hot streak," inwhichhe's hernia surgery. According had to prove he was worth touchdowns. He suffered thrown 19 touchdown toreports, Lynch won't be the money the franchise is atornrightpatellar tendon passes in the last five at practice this week and paying him. Strong safety in Seattle's 39-30 win over games - including three the earliest he'll return is Kam Chancellor held out the Pittsburgh Steelers and TDs in the game against for the final regular season the first three games due is lost for the season, the Browns -- as theygame. Undrafted rookie Thomas Rawls picked up where Lynch left off, hav- ing four games where he ran for over 100 yards, including a 209-yard game against the San Francis- co 49ers. He suffered a fractured ankle in the Seahawks' Dec. 13 game against the Baltimore Ra- vens and is also out for the season. Rawls had 147 carries for 830 yards and four rushing touchdowns and one receiving touch- down in his successful rookie season. See Crunch "rime page 3