POULSBO — Jon Cooke has looked into the crowds at wrestling matches and seen fans leaning one way or the other — mimicking the action on the mat without realizing it.
POULSBO — If you ask North Kitsap discus standout Jason Mumford why he’s been successful this year, he may cite his new dedication to weight lifting; he may mention his careful focus on the technique of hurling the discus; or, more likely, he’ll give props to the orange traffic cone.
The North Kitsap junior, who will join Viking hurdler Kolby Hoover at the Washington State High School Track Tournament this weekend, found the orange cone sitting atop his 1983 Ford Fairmont one day at school after the car had died.
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 4×200 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.
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.
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.”
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.
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.
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.