Vikings plunge into district playoff race

The track team has 11 competitors in districts at Puyallup’s Sparks Stadium, while the tennis team sent three players, one singles player and a doubles team, to competition at the University of Puget Sound and Bellarmine High School. Some athletes were more excited than others to qualify. The 4x200 track team, which ran its fastest time ever at the league tournament in Bremerton, thought it had not qualified for the second day of competition until coach Helen Smith found out in a coaches’ meeting that another team had disqualified.

Questions and answers with Will Fenton

Former Viking takes the hill for the UW Huskies

Vikings qualify 11 for district track meet

The Vikings will send 11 athletes to Sparks Field to compete in 13 events after the athletes posted victories — and impressive best times — in the league meet at Bremerton.

Haupt to become a Wildcat

Bryan Haupt, the center who led the North Kitsap Vikings in scoring and rebounding this year, will play his next organized basketball at Central Washington. After a visit to the school during spring break and a scrimmage with some of the Wildcats’ players, Haupt signed a letter of intent to play for the Wildcats.

Carlsen released by Cubs

One day after striking out the side against the Fort Wayne Wizards and picking up a win for the Lansing Lugnuts, Jeff Carlsen, a former star pitcher at North Kitsap High School and the University of Washington, was released by the Chicago Cubs. If it seems odd for an organization to release a pitcher who had an earned run average under two last year; a pitcher who had been a draft pick the year before after a record-setting career for the Huskies; a pitcher who, the night before, had whiffed a trio of Wizards — well, it seems odd to Jeff Carlsen, too. “They didn’t think my arm would come around fast enough,” Carlsen said. “I didn’t agree, but my opinion didn’t matter in the decision.”

Viking vaulters make a huge splash in Poulsbo

POULSBO — Pole vaulting is fun, North Kitsap track athletes say, if you can stand the water up your nose. Coach Mark Lunsford, who coaches the vaulters three days a week, occasionally drives the athletes to Bangor, where they don swimsuits and goggles to hone their technique underwater in the Navy base’s pool. “The underwater part was weird (at first),” vaulter Rachel Walters said.

Hildebrand bounces back from knee injury

POULSBO — Instead of a Corvette, Ty Hildebrand got a ride on the trainer’s cart. Instead of a crown, he got crutches.

Sounders make a rare visit to North Kitsap

POULSBO — One young fan couldn’t wait. “Only three minutes to go!” she squealed, staring intently at the North Kitsap High School field only moments before the Seattle Sounders were due. Unfortunately, her enthusiasm bounded over the laws of time and space; the clock revealed three and a half minutes until the professional team from Seattle faced the Seattle Pacific University Falcons. But the girl’s love for soccer wasn’t hushed; in fact, it was encouraged. North Kitsap fans love soccer like snooty Frenchman love cheese, and nowhere was that love more apparent than NKHS Saturday night, where the Sounders and Falcons clashed in an exhibition match that raised money for North Kitsap soccer clubs.

Martial artists claim medals at state competition

POULSBO — The more things change, the more they stay the same. Master Victor Solier, the head instructor at Solier’s Taekwondo in Poulsbo, has been a busy man lately; he has been named as the head coach of the Washington State taekwondo team, and has been orchestrating a move for Solier’s Taekwondo from its current location on Viking Way to the former home of Liberty Bay Dance Works, also on Viking Way.

Two martial-arts teachers honored

POULSBO — Several years ago, when John Townsend and Victor Solier were learning taekwondo under a Korean grand master named Hak Tok Yun, they learned that Yun was a two-time national champion in Korea, so they knew he possessed skill; they learned Yun had been Gerald Ford’s personal bodyguard when the then-president had visited the country, so they knew he possessed toughness; and they learned how Yun could slam his forearm into a barbell 1,500 times when one strike would injure a normal man, so they knew he possessed strength.

Depleted Viking squad manages 3-3 tie with Port Townsend

POULSBO — A depleted North Kitsap soccer team tied the rejuvenated Port Townsend squad Saturday afternoon 3-3. The Vikings were without several players due to sickness, travel and academics; Port Townsend had added several players since the Vikings saw them last, when several basketball players were involved in the 3A playoffs.

Vikings edge Wolves for first league win

POULSBO — The North Kitsap fastpitch team built a 5-1 lead against South Kitsap Monday afternoon, then watched the Wolves’ Cathy Kniess slash the lead to 5-4 with one swing of the bat. Don’t say they weren’t warned.

Mix of talent bodes well for Viking fastpitch

POULSBO — If the sneak previews are any indication, this year’s North Kitsap High School fastpitch team could be a blockbuster. But head coach Dan Kolda is cautioning fans and players that the real film has yet to start rolling.

PJH Panthers take bit out of Blazers

POULSBO — The Poulsbo Panthers opened the first quarter of Thursday’s game versus Marcus Whitman Junior High with a 10-2 run. The second half of that quarter was no slouch, either. The Panthers reeled off a 13-2 run to end the quarter — and the Blazers. The Panthers, who so far have struggled on offense in the early season, reversed that trend against Marcus, beating their rivals from South Kitsap 66-18.

NK Girl Scouts to stage own Olympics at KJH

KINGSTON — Sick of the Olympics? Why don’t you go to the Olympics instead? More than 100 North-Kitsap based Girl Scouts will gather from 1 to 4 p.m. tomorrow to play their own version of the Olympic Games.

KJH Cavaliers take to the mats tomorrow

POULSBO — The Kingston Junior High wrestling team will start its season tomorrow. The Cavs will face Bremerton at 3 p.m.

Viking athletes make state competitions

POULSBO — The North Kitsap Vikings had several athletes travel to state competition this year, and a pair of them finished among the top 10 athletes in Washington.

Andersen and Jennings in state Mat Classic

It will be a pair of firsts for two Viking wrestlers this week. Senior wrestlers Jordan Andersen and Jerrod Jennings have both qualified for the Tacoma Mat Classic state finals this week.

Olympic skier has Poulsbo connection

POULSBO — Norman Livers has heard the stories before: How Eric Bergoust would climb onto his parents’ roof in Missoula, Mont., and fling himself to a waiting pair of mattresses before. How Bergoust wanted to be a stuntman, until he and a bunch of friends piled into a car and drove to Calgary to watch the 1988 Winter Olympics, and his plans changed. How Bergoust trained maniacally to become the U.S. World Cup champion in aerial skiing, then earned gold in the Nagano Olympics four years ago.

Viking boys suffer a crash in crunch time

PORT ANGELES — The North Kitsap boys’ basketball team was hoping to end its slide Friday afternoon against the same team it started against: Port Angeles. It was the Roughriders who erased a nine point fourth-quarter deficit last month and handed the Vikings their first league loss. The Vikings, who before the loss had been ruling the Olympic League with three straight wins, tumbled by losing four of the next five; and the Roughriders shot up the charts by culling a 7-2 league record. But after a close, defensive game, the Roughriders again ended the Vikings’ hopes. This time, they didn’t have to come back from nine down to do it.