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Twenty reasons junior and high-school sports are better than the pros...
"POULSBO - It wasn't quite football. Sure, players crunched into each other in the trenches. And receivers stretched themselves out for fingertip catches. And when flags flew, some eyes rolled. But Saturday's jamboree, held at the North Kitsap High School field, was just for practice. North Kitsap was one of the four teams that participated. They joined North Mason, Klahowya and Bainbridge Island. An offensive and defensive team of each school occupied one-fourth of the field, so two games could go at once. So while North Mason's defense may be facing Bainbridge's offense on one end, North Mason's offense may be facing North Kitsap's defense on another. The purpose was for each team to get in some practice before the games start for real next week. Each match would continue for a specific number of plays. "
"KINGSTON - The players aren't loud enough for Tony Chisholm. So Chisholm, the head football coach at Kingston Junior High, holds one hand into the air, four fingers aloft, and asks the question again. What do four fingers stand for? He asks, and this time the response comes thundering back: Four quarters! Chisholm smiles at the sea of helmeted athletes in front of him. Chisholm has been with the KJH football program since its creation six years ago. For four years he served as an assistant under head coaches Tom Wiley and Scott McKay. The last two years he has been on his own, and the Cavaliers have tallied 6-1 and 5-2 records in those years. "
Athletes hope to improve in this year's standings.
"POULSBO - Cross-country is unlike any other sport, said coach Katie Savage. Savage should know. She also coaches the North Kitsap High School track team, and she said that the cross-country season, which begins Sept. 7, is different. It's not the distance that makes it difficult, she said of the sport, which requires the athletes to run between 2.8 and 3.1 miles. It's that it's off-road. So, Savage said, the runners will often find themselves winding through trails, crunching on gravel, and evading obstacles. The strategies are very different (than track), she said. There's a lot more lateral movement, so your ankles have to be flexible. "
"POULSBO - When Teri Ishihara looked at the practice field Thursday afternoon, she saw more than two teams of soccer players battling it out. She saw a load of potential. Potential is a word that comes up often connected to the North Kitsap High School 2000 girls' soccer team, a team loaded with talent and looking to improve on last year's showing. This year's our year, said Lindsey Ross, a senior and co-captain of the team. "
"POULSBO - The North Kitsap High School girls' swimming and diving team is ready to dive into a new season. And with the teams pushing 35 members, coaches Marilyn Grindrod and Greg Braun are looking for one thing: improvement. Improvement, Braun said, is the yardstick team members measure themselves by. That's what we're looking for, he said. That's our whole focus. Last season that measurement was positive, he said. We think the team did very well, he said. We had a lot of rookies who learned an awful lot of skills. We saw times improve across the board, Braun said after a Thursday practice. The team will have lots of room to grow this year with many inexperienced swimmers and divers coming in. "
NK grad now prowls the sidelines as a Cougar
School athletics just a few short weeks away.
"POULSBO - The first day of practice found Paul Stock with sweat darkening his shirt and a football-shaped pendant dangling from a chain around his neck. Stock was just one of the many young athletes gathered on Hamilton Field Monday afternoon, going through a grueling first practice for North Kitsap Pee Wee Football. Behind Stock, coaches had potential football players leap over pylons, drop to the ground, and run in place. Later in the practice I'll yell, one coach threatened - and judging from their headlight-sized eyes, the players believed him. Stock, a grizzled veteran at age 10, is starting his third season. I've always liked football, he said. I like the contact, the hitting, just being out there playing. And I know three-quarters of the kids playing. Stock said he wanted to play football even before he was eligible. I waited for a long time to do this, he said. Stock said that playing helped him relate to the game more. After your first year, when you see a famous player, you've played that position. When they're on the one-yard line you know it. You've been on the one-yard line. Stock enjoys playing defense, carrying the ball, and making plays. And, like those NFL heroes, he has a season goal. I'd like to win a championship if I could, he said. Pee Wee Football in North Kitsap is made up of four teams - A, B, C and D strings, plus a flag football team for younger kids. "
Tryouts held all week at Wolfle.
"HANSVILLE - Bill Juzwiak just moved to Silverdale from Philadelphia, and has never competed in a triathlon before. But he came out to a drizzly Buck Lake Park on Sunday anyway, ready to compete in the second annual Olympics triathlon. I swim a lot, I run a lot, and I just bought a bike, Juzwiak said. So I thought, what the heck. Juzwiak did well, finishing twenty-ninth among the more than 80 competitors who showed up at Buck Lake Park Sunday morning, as well as a crowd of family, friends, fans, and the occasional dog. This is the first year for a kid's race, too, so children could be seen jogging across the park, mirroring their (usually) more serious counterparts from the adult world. This is the second year for the event, which features a 750 meter swim in Buck Lake, a 30 kilometer bike ride through the streets of Hansville, and a five kilometer run through the park and roads around it. Kevin Lynch, a triathlon enthusiast and supporter who began the event last year, said 66 people signed up last year, 83 this year ... and that's not counting the 15 kids in the kids' race. Lynch has been running triathlons for 10 years, beginning when he was an employee for the Department of Defense. Now Lynch spends most of his time setting up triathlons. It's what I do. It's my passion, he said."
"Brown, Camus and Berman to reunite on the diamond. "
A member of Nilsen's Appliance waits for his pitch during a game against Critter Ridders Saturday.
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