7 on 7 tourney prepares gridders for season

The last time North Kitsap played football it was a monsoon.

Saturday, it was sunny and hot – perfect weather for throwing a football. Viking coach Jeff Weible would have loved weather like that when NK lost to Lynden in the state semifinals last year. With legendary quarterback Colton Bower passing the ball, it might have been a different outcome.

But that was then. This is now. Weible is looking for a QB to take over behind center now that Bower is on to Washington State University. He said senior Beau Pahrmann is the most likely candidate. Because of some easy victories last year Pahrmann got to take a few snaps behind center.

Whoever is the QB is going to have a tremendous receiving corps. Weible said it’s one of the best in the state.

Junior Logan Sloman and Jaxson Gore will likely lead the way, with junior Alex Hitchings and sophomore Lelond Anderson also often in the mix. The coach said the Vikings have some good running backs, too, who can catch the ball. Add all that to a strong offensive line, and he said they could be passing the ball 70% of the time.

That’s what was taking place July 30 when NK, and Kingston, too, participated in a 7-on-7 tournament at Lakewood High School.

In the receiver position, it’s important to get separation from a defender when running pass routes. But Weible was also looking for the receivers themselves to separate from each other in competing for playing time.

While it’s nice to win games at such a tourney, it’s more important for the players to practice their reads, compete and get better, their coach said.

The event is called the 14th Annual Cougars Championship Passing Tournament and Lineman Challenge. Players compete in shorts, but wear helmets for protection. It’s basically one-hand touch with running backs and receivers going out for passes and linebackers and defensive backs defending. They have three downs to gain 15 yards using 40 yards of a football field. QB gets four seconds to throw. Lineman compete in various strength events, such as tug of war and weightlifting.

NK opened against Kennedy Catholic, then played Marysville-Pilchuck and Cedarcrest. Lake Stevens ended up winning the tourney title, beating Kennedy Catholic.


The Bucs opened against Bothell, then played Lakewood and Jackson.

Coach Billy Russo of the Bucs said they also want to get better, along with fine-tuning plays for the season. He said some of his players have been on baseball teams this summer, so they are just getting going on the gridiron.

Russo, in his 25th year of coaching, said he also has a solid offensive line to protect returning quarterback senior Brooks Arnim. Russo said Arnim is the best running QB in the league, placing third overall in rushing last year. Some of the plays are drawn up that way, and other times he runs out of the pocket to gain yardage.

The coach said he hopes to have a balanced passing and rushing attack. But his focus will be taking advantage of anything opposing defenses give them.

When the Bucs do pass the ball look for Armin to try to toss to returning all-league receiver Noah Walter.

NK quarterback Beau Pharmann motions to a receiver.
Viking quarterback Beau Pharmann gets set to take the snap from center during the tourney.
NK coach Jeff Weible, right, talks with another coach at the 7 on 7 tourney.
Kingston quarterback Brooks Arnim rolls out to pass at the tourney.
Kingston sophomore Dewaun Swan catches a pass.
Buc senior Hugo Hall catches the ball in traffic with teammate Aaron Fitsemons, left, preparing for a block.
Kingston coach Billy Russo talks to his team during the huddle about what play to run.
At the 7 on 7 tourney, players compete in shorts, but keep their head protected with helmets.