By MIKE HUFFMAN
Sure, it's still early in the season. But there's no reason to doubt that this year's version of the Cheney Blackhawks boys soccer team will be anything short of a monster.
The proof is right there in the stats. Three contests into the inaugural Great Northern League season, and Cheney has yet to give up a single goal. And after an 8-0 win over Colville on Saturday and a 10-0 victory over Clarkston last Thursday, last Tuesday's 2-0 victory over Medical Lake could almost be considered something of a disappointment.
Still, head coach Steve Davis is playing his cards close to the vest. He doesn't want to say too much about this year's squad until a few more games get under the team's belt.
“It's still pretty early in the season,” he said. “Once we see a few more teams in this first go around, then we'll have a better idea of what we're made of.”
Cheney returns six seniors: Adam and Tanner Brock, Ryan Chang, Caleb Johnson, Adam Zakrzewski and Tyler Ziemann.
In the Colville game, the hapless Indians (1-2 GNL, 1-3 overall) spent most of the game on their end of the field, as they didn't get a single shot on goal. On the other hand, Cheney (3-0, 4-0) pelted Colville's goaltender with 28 shots.
The story for Cheney in 2007 appears to be junior forward Mitch Weller, who scored four goals, including the first one 13 minutes into the game. He was assisted by senior Caleb Johnson, who scored the Blackhawks' second goal that afternoon. Weller then went on to get a pure hat trick in the second half, scoring three goals in a row at the 44th, 55th and 58th minutes.
Cheney also got goals from Nathan Lewis and Tanner Brock.
While goaltender David Sigley could sleep during the Colville game, he was tested on five shots by Clarkston last Thursday.
But the Bantams were goose-egged as well, as the Hawks marched into double-digits on goals by Zakrzewski (two), Dane Harrod (two), Caton Oyoloker, Chang, Justin Hale, Williams, Brock and Sigley.
In the Medical Lake game on March 13, both teams played to a stalemate in the first half. Zakrzewski was able to penetrate all alone at the 44th minute and again on an assist by Hale in the 78th minute.
While it's been a more-than-impressive start, Davis hopes his team can continue the pace through the long spring season.
“We want to get better after every game,” he said.
Cheney will host Pullman at 3:30 p.m. today (Thursday).
The Hawks then travel to Albi Stadium in Spokane to play Ferris in a non-league contest at 4 p.m. on Monday. Cheney is then back home on Tuesday to take on Lakeside at 3:30 p.m.
Mike Huffman can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org