Walker stands out on court, wins second time

Sentinel photo by JEFF FISHBEIN
Ryan Walker • Rothrock/Webber Award

LEWISTOWN — Ryan Walker is the all-time leading scorer in Mifflin County boys basketball history.

He can now add a two-time winner of the Harry Rothrock/Dick Webber boys basketball award winner to his high school resume.

“I think it really represents how much time I put on the floor,” Walker said. “I worked really hard in the gym, with the coaches and my dad, really everybody who got me here. It’s very humbling that I’ve won the trophy for two years. I think it’s an awesome experience to have the award presented to me. It’s really amazing.”

Walker will be the first to tell you that he didn’t expect to win the award once, much less twice before graduating. He certainly didn’t think he’d be atop the school’s scoring boards either.

“I never expected to be the all-time leading scorer,” he said. “I think I scored like two points my freshman year so I figured I’m never going to get near that. My sophomore year was okay, but by my senior year, they (father and coach Dave Sheetz) brought me to the top. I finished with 905 points, and that’s not that many so somebody will come along and break it, but I think it’s awesome.”

After setting the program record for 3-pointers in a season his junior year, Walker wanted just a little bit more out of his senior year.

The senior averaged 18.4 points per game in 22 games played. He had a few games where he scored at least 20 points including 28 at Lewisburg, 22 against Hollidaysburg and 21 against Central Dauphin.

His peak performance came at the end of January when Walker scored 30 on Central Dauphin in an overtime win.

Much of that would not have been possible had Walker not taken the time to work on his jump shot over the years, something he’s proud to have put the time and effort into.

“The thing I’ve done the most is conditioning and working on my jump shot,” Walker said. “My sophomore year, I wasn’t a really good jump shot shooter and I really put in the time with my dad and Coach Sheetz, they got me to be a much better shooter by my junior year.”

Walker will continue to play basketball, but at a new school and in a new state. He has plans on attending McDaniel College in the fall.

Rounding the rest of the voting, Drew Westover and Isaiah Collins finished in a tie for third place while Tyreen Smalley was runner-up.

The Harry Rothrock/Dick Webber Award is presented annually by Big Lewie (WLUI) radio to Mifflin County’s top boys basketball player. Nominees are voted on by local media, including The Sentinel, and representatives of the Mifflin County High School’s athletic department. Each voter chose three candidates, with points awarded to first, second and third-place vote recipients and the award going to the player with the highest vote total.