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POULSBO — Though it will be tough to rival the excitement of the Viking success on the short track last year, 2007 is building up to be a big year in the field, and possibly even larger in long distance. The Viking throwers, jumpers and distance runners are forming the nucleus of the family for which Viking track made itself known in 2006. The distance crew is made up largely of North’s cross-country team which carried on that emphasis during the fall season with a team trip to state.
POULSBO — They’ve got a new head coach, a new batch of seniors and a new schedule to play, but the North Kitsap Vikings are still taking to the pitch like they’ve been doing it for years. Chris May stepped in as head coach earlier this winter and has stepped in with immediate changes — in a big way with increased off-season training. He met with the team during the first week of January and since then, team captains led conditioning sessions on their own time.
POULSBO — At the head seat of the North Kitsap Soccer Club, a veteran volunteer has stepped down while another veteran steps up. The NKSC’s former youth coordinator and veteran select team coach Aaron Vernik was approved to replace former president Todd Stone at the NKSC board’s Feb. 26 meeting.
POULSBO — In the words of one of the team’s captains, Kendall Peiguss, the upcoming season for North Kitsap Viking fastpitch is both an end and a beginning. In the dugout, 2007 marks the end of former head coach Dan Kolda’s tenure and the beginning of Bill Hobaugh’s reemergence. It will also be the final year for a combined North Kitsap squad, but it’s the beginning for the underclassmen cadre of the team.
POULSBO — During the offseason, members of North Kitsap Viking baseball played in and picked up Babe Ruth state championships while some even made a trip to the Babe Ruth World Series. Now, they bring that confidence to the NK diamond. “They expect to win and they expect to be successful.That’s a big part of the game is just believing,” NK head coach Jeff Weible said. “A lot of them have put in the time and have earned the right to win.”
POULSBO — The game of golf is considered one of the most intricate, delicate and difficult sports to master. And while some struggle to fully achieve the skills in a lifetime, North Kitsap High School girls golf coach Jay DeVries is aiming to lay a foundation for this year’s Vikings in about two weeks.
It’s been a fickle year for Kitsap County prep girls basketball. From North Kitsap storming in like a lion and lambing out before the playoffs to the Olympic High School Trojans’ resurgence from a one-win season two years ago to the Olympic League championship, 2007 had it all.
MONMOUTH, ORE. — After four years of fierce play at North Kitsap High School and plus six years of development as part of the select team Westsound FC — formerly FC Kitsap — NK’s fiery forward Brenna Lander is taking her enthusiasm onto the NCAA division II soccer pitch.
While a few area boys basketball teams continue their battles into the postseason with eyes fixed on the ultimate prize of a state championship, other teams like North Kitsap have begun to focus on off-season preparation. And what better way to begin the charge for 2008 than with recognition of the jobs well done in 2007.
POULSBO — Kingston Junior High School’s girls basketball winning streak spanning three-plus years and more than 40 consecutive games has been broken. It all went down, almost fittingly, in the typical overtime period of the Cav’s first meeting of the year with their rival Poulsbo Panthers. It was one of those games that almost defies explanation.
TACOMA — Both ends of the North Kitsap High School gymnastics spectrum experienced the air of the state meet this weekend as freshman Melissa Kunold and senior Kai Morrow made the trip. NK head coach Kris Goodfellow said both took the season’s culmination in Tacoma in stride.
TACOMA — It’s a tough road to a state championship on the mats of the Tacoma Dome. And though only one of the North Kitsap Vikings embarking on the weekend made it all the way to the finish line, none of those in purple and gold were walking alone. With seven representatives in 2007, North sent one of its largest crews ever to the Mat Classic XIX Feb. 16-17.
POULSBO — A dose of “perfect timing” has led North Kitsap educator Bill Hobaugh back out into the Vikings’ athletic field. After more than a decade hiatus, Hobaugh will be returning to the scene as head coach on the NK fastpitch diamond — replacing Dan Kolda, who resigned last spring. Early in his career at NKHS, Hobaugh was head coach of the softball team when it was still slowpitch. He also helped coach basketball and soccer for the Vikings during the 1980s and 1990s and now the self-professed sports nut is at it again.
POULSBO — High school football players across the nation signed their names Feb. 7, each one laying the groundwork for their respective steps into the next level of competition. It was the NCAA’s national letter of intent signing day and at North Kitsap High School before the first bell, senior Aaron Salo sat at a conference table with pen in hand and a smile on his face.
TACOMA — While the Vikings came back without any championships from the Region III wrestling tournament at Mount Tahoma High School this weekend, they returned owning a little piece of history. Seven of North’s wrestlers earned entry into the 2007 Mat Classic XVI — that’s near the top number North has sent to state in any given year, NK head coach Jon Cooke said, and the absolute most of this decade.
FEDERAL WAY — If only North was classified as a 3A school. That’s what the North Kitsap gymnastics team was wishing this weekend at the West Central District meet at Federal Way High School, head coach Kris Goodfellow said. This year, after a shake-up in the way the 3A and 4A state meets are scheduled, there were considerably less qualifying spots available — almost half.
POULSBO — Any team that has the experience on the incoming Poulsbo Panthers girls basketball varsity squad, is already one step ahead of the game. This year’s Panthers have played together through the school program as well as in rec league programs. Some of them have been on the court together since elementary school.
KINGSTON — Days away from its Feb. 13 home opener, Kingston Junior High School’s gym is filled with anticipation. This year’s girls basketball team has a chance to cap a junior high school legacy for the Cavaliers.
POULSBO — North Kitsap’s outdoor athletes will finally have a roof over their heads. After years of searching for an alternative to the lack of field availability during the winter, NK’s outdoor sports community now has a gem in its backyard — more specifically off Finn Hill Road in College Marketplace. The Zone Sportsplex opened last week, offering indoor recreation and fitness options on a grand scale.
POULSBO — With a three-point loss to the Gig Harbor Tides Friday night at home, North Kitsap boys basketball ended its first year under head coach Tony Chisholm. And while the NK win/loss record seems riddled with discord, the actual tenor of the season was much more positive.