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Vikes earn No. 1 seed to Districts; share title with Bucs | Boys soccer
POULSBO — At least one high school team from the North Kitsap School District was guaranteed the Olympic League title for the 2012-13 soccer season. As it turns out, both high schools brought home the title.
The Kingston Buccaneers and North Kitsap Vikings varsity teams are co-champions this season. The two teams finished the regular season with 42 points. The Bucs finished 13-1-1-1, the Vikes finished 14-0-0-2.
It’s rare to have co-champions in Olympic League soccer, and more so that the teams are from the same district, Kingston head coach Craig Smith said.
“It is unique — extremely unique — that co-champions are from the same school district,” Smith said.
Though his team would have preferred to take it outright, North Kitsap head coach Greg St. Peter doesn’t have any qualms with the way the season ended.
“It’s a fantastic way to end the season,” St. Peter said.
Because the teams tied, there was an Olympic League playoff game May 8 at North Kitsap Stadium between the two teams. The Vikings won 2-0 to earn the No. 1 seed to the district tournament. The Bucs have the No. 2 seed. The tournament started May 8, with a loser out game. The tournament continues May 11. The top six teams from the tournament advance to State.
The playoff game replaces a tie-breaker based on amount of goals for and against during the season.
Though the Bucs and Vikes played each other for the third time this season, Smith described the game as a “meaningful-friendly.” If there was no playoff game, the teams would be practicing for Districts anyway. A playoff game between the top two teams in the league is good preparation for the next level of soccer, Smith said.
The game means a lot locally, St. Peter said. However, he expected there to be a “fine line” of playing to win, and making sure his team is in good shape for Districts, he said.
“We’re a little concerned about a few guys with injuries,” St. Peter said earlier this week. “I don’t want to lose any guys before playoffs Saturday.”
St. Peter wants the league playoff game to motivate the Vikings for postseason.
Both coaches don’t know which seed they would like their team to earn into Districts. Though one team will seed higher, there’s always the chance another seed will play an easier team. However, a higher seed into Districts means a higher seed into State, Smith said.
Smith said he just wants to see the Bucs go to State. The team has been denied for years; the last three years the Bucs have been eliminated from Districts by Interlake.
In his first year as head coach of the Vikings, St. Peter said it doesn’t matter who they play, as long as the Vikings execute their game plan in Districts.