The Vikings were so zoned in during their area opener against Mortimer Jordan that even an errant fire alarm couldn’t slow them down.
Walker scored the first 17 points of the game and never looked back, beating Hayden 61-21 in the area opener for both teams.
“I told the kids that, to me, the season started tonight,” Walker coach Scotty Ware said. “All that other stuff was preseason. The area games are the ones that matter. You always want to win your area games, especially at home. It feels good to get one under our belt.”
The Vikings (2-4 overall, 1-0 in area play), got six straight points from Matt McKay to start the game. That was just the beginning.
Following a brief stoppage of play due to the alarm, the Vikings kept on scoring.
A Walker steal resulted in a Jaray McElrath basket and Riley Graham followed with back-to-back scores, including a 3-pointer for a 13-0 lead with 5:26 left in the quarter.
Denzell Daley then scored two baskets in a 12-second span for a 17-0 advantage at the 2:09 mark of the quarter.
“I guess the last time we had a game where we started like that was last year in our first game against Winfield where we scored 35 points in the first quarter,” Ware said.
Hayden finally got on the board with 1:56 left in the quarter, but the damage was done.
Ware said Friday’s quick start was led by Walker’s defensive pressure.
“We knew they didn’t handle the ball well. That was kind of our point of focus. We wanted to force them into things they didn’t feel comfortable doing,” Ware said.
Walker took a 19-2 lead into the second quarter and led 35-10 at the half. The Vikings expanded on their lead in the third quarter, outscoring Hayden 18-8 for a 53-18 lead going into the final quarter.
The Vikings held the Wildcats to just three fourth-quarter points.
Ten players scored points for Walker led by McKay’s 14 points. Daley added 11, McElrath and Graham put in eight points each, Treyvon Chatman and Jonathan McCants both added six points, Kenyatta Woods had three, Shayan Kassim and Dalton Robinson both put in two and James Clouse had a point.
For Hayden (2-5, 0-1, Duncan Parker had seven points.
Next up for Walker is an area road game at Mortimer Jordan on Tuesday.
The Blue Devils finished as the region champions last season, snapping Walker’s four-year streak.
“We’ve got to go to Mortimer Jordan Tuesday night. That’s a tough place to play,” Ware said.
Hayden 61, Walker 50
Walker got within striking distance in the fourth quarter Friday night against Hayden, but the Wildcats responded with a 10-0 run to put the game out of reach en route to a 61-50 victory.
The Vikings trailed by seven points going into the fourth quarter, but cut the lead to just two points at 49-47 with 4:58 left in the game after a Madisyn Hood 3-point play, but Hayden’s Grayson Taylor responded with a 3-pointer of her own to start the Wildcats’ run.
Walker only scored three points over the final 4:58 minutes, on a Sidney Cooper 3-pointer with 53 seconds remaining.
The game was close through the first half.
Walker (4-5, 0-1) trailed 14-13 after the opening quarter and 28-23 at the half. Hayden (7-0, 1-0) led 44-37 after three quarters.
For Walker, Cooper finished with 19 points, Hood had 16 points and Jazmine Lake put in nine.
Hayden’s Taylor led all scorers with 20 points.
Walker 60, Hayden 28
Walker’s JV boys team improved to 5-1 with a blowout win over the Wildcats.
The Vikings led 13-8 after the opening quarter and held Hayden to just two points in the second quarter for a 23-10 halftime lead. Walker led 46-21 after three quarters.
For Walker, three players scored in double figures with Isreal Johnson leading the way with 15 points, Aaron Morris added 14 points, Marlon Oliver had 10 and Jarred Ollie put in nine.
Walker 31, Hayden 14
Walker’s JV girls remained perfect on the season with a 31-14 victory over Hayden on Friday. The Vikings are now 8-0 on the season.
Against Hayden, Carleigh Taylor led the way with nine points, Annalee Stephens had eight and Christina Robison had five.