Cheney Free Press -



Blackhawks open swim campaign with split against Walla Walla, Selah


John McCallum

Cheney's Scott Nadeau (top) is virtually even with Walla Walla's Michah Wilwand at the turn of the breaststroke leg in the 200-yard medley relay last Thursday. The Blackhawk boys team touched the wall just over two seconds ahead of the Bulldogs foursome to capture the event, but ended up on the short end of the team score in their first meet of the season.

The Cheney High boys swimming team got their 2013-2014 season off to a good start by splitting a pair of meets last week with Walla Walla and Selah. The Blackhawks knocked off the Vikings 96-73 at Lions Pool in Yakima on Saturday after losing 110-61 to the 4A Bulldogs at home Thursday.

Cheney captured first place in eight of 11 events against Selah Saturday, including a 1-2-3 finish in the 200-yard freestyle. Nick Steele took first in the event with a time of 2 minutes, 6.26 seconds, followed by Xavier Meyer in second and Arseniy Tepp third.

Scott Nadeau won the 200 individual medley in 2:11.01 while Caleb Prophet was first in the 50 free in 25.96. Nadeau's time was faster than the state standard of 2:12.90 for the second consecutive meet, qualifying him for February's state meet in the process.

Nadeau was also first in the 100 butterfly in 58.77, 27/100ths of a second above the state standard, while Trevor Babcock was first in the 100 free in 53.75, about two and half seconds above the state mark.

Steele was first in the 500 free in 5:50.74 while Babcock took first in the 100 backstroke in 1:04.33. Babcock, Nadeau, Prophet and Steele teamed up to win the 200 relay with a time of 1:40.85 while also finishing third in the 400 relay in 3:44.14.

Cheney notched four first-place and five second-place finishes Thursday afternoon against the Bulldogs at Eastern Washington University's pool. Steele won the 200 free in 2:06.52 while Nadeau captured the 200 IM in 2:10.36, going below the state qualifying mark in his first meet of the season.

Babcock captured first in the 100 free in 53.24, and teamed with Nadeau, Prophet and Steele to win the 200-yard medley relay in 1:53.71 as well as finish second in the 200 free relay in 3:42.73.

Blackhawks head coach Jennifer Hochwalt was impressed with her team's start, especially the times since the swimmers were competing in a number of events.

"When they're racing, they're racing without much rest so the times are really good," she said.

Cheney doesn't return to the pool competitively until Jan. 9 when they host Grandview and Prosser in a league meet, their second of three home meets this season. Hochwalt isn't going to be easing up on the training, however, as the Blackhawks will have four very competitive meets against eight teams in a 23-day stretch leading up to district competition Feb. 7-8.

"We have to get all our hard work in now," she said.

John McCallum can be reached at


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