Orange County Player of the Week : Walker Nears Meeting His Own Tough Goals

February 12, 1986|STEVE KRESAL

Kevin Walker didn't need to prove anything in his senior season.

He'd already signed to play at UCLA before the season started. He was on two Orange League Championship Brea-Olinda High School boys' basketball teams, and was the league's Most Valuable Player as a junior.

But, Walker didn't waltz through his senior season trying not to get hurt.

The 6-foot 10-inch senior is averaging 27.1 points, 11.2 rebounds, shooting 54% from the field and 86% from the free-throw line. And the Wildcats (8-0, 20-4) have already clinched the Orange League championship.

"The early signing helped a lot," Walker said. "I had my mind made up so there was no sense in dragging it out. This way there haven't been letters coming and the phone isn't always ringing. I've been able to just concentrate on basketball."

As impressive as those numbers seem, they are only close to the ones Walker set for himself at the start of the season. He wanted to average 28 points, 13 rebounds and shot 60% a game.

"It was kind of frustrating earlier in the season. I didn't think I was playing as well as I could. My rebounding was really frustrating. But, ever since league has started, I've been doing better."

In fairness to Walker, he normally plays around three quarters a game. It's not that he tires, but the Wildcats are just so much better than the rest of their league. Brea-Olinda is outscoring its opponents by more than 20 points, 67.7 to 47.2.

Coach Gene Lloyd usually pulls his starters early in the fourth quarter.

Walker finally got to play in the fourth quarter last week against against Anaheim, only because he'd scored 38 points in three quarters and was only eight away from the school record of 45 set by Roger Anderson in 1982 against Lynwood.

Walker played the first four minutes of the final quarter, set the record at 46 and was pulled immediately from the Wildcats' 88-50 win.

"As the coach," Lloyd said, "You have to decide what's good for your team. But, you have to be fair to the opponent. It was so obvious that he could get the record I let him go."

Earlier in the week, in a 77-47 win over Western, Walker broke the Brea-Olinda career scoring record of 1,496 held by Paul Thomas. Walker has 1,573 with two regular season games left.

For this, Walker has been named Times Player of the Week.

"It was nice," Walker said of the scoring records. "Personally the records and the recognition that have come have been fun. Right now the records are nice to have as long as we win the 3-A CIF. I'm more interested in the team than the records.

"I've always had the single-game record in the back of mind mind. I was just never sure if I would stay in a game long enough to get it. My dad was keeping track of the career record. I didn't even know I had it till a bunch of my friends started to cheer in the stands."

Kevin Walker

Brea-Olinda High School

Position: Forward

Height, Class: 6-10, Sr.

Last Week: Scored 81 points and had 22 rebounds.

Season: Is averaging 27.1 points and 11.2 rebounds a game.

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