Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

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Walker’s big day helps Chiefs pummel Falcons

by Mike Ramczyk

August 25, 2011

PADDOCK LAKE — Kenneth Walker needs to ask his parents to buy him a lottery ticket. As a matter of fact, he might want the whole roll.

It was that kind of Friday night for the Big Foot senior running back.

Celebrating his 17th birthday, Walker's gift that kept on giving was the Westosha Central defense and special teams.

The 6-foot-1, 180-pound speed demon returned the opening kickoff 92 yards for a score en route to a four-touchdown night, lifting Division 4 Big Foot over the Division 2 Falcons, 49-21. As of Tuesday, Big Foot (1-0) is ranked fourth in the state's medium division (350-899 students) by the Associated Press.

"I just wanted to do something special for my birthday," Walker said. "I was feeling good today."

Walker racked up 117 yards on a mere nine carries with three touchdown scampers. He credited his teammates for his performance.

"Cut backs were there, and the linemen kept pushing," Walker said. "I wasn't sure how we would start out. I was a little surprised. The beginning of the game was a little scary, but we ended up working together."

Walker scored on a two-yard run with 7:52 left in the first quarter to extend Big Foot's lead to 14-0 before the Falcons answered with a strong drive capped off by a Tyler Stoxen touchdown run with three minutes left in the period.

That only fueled the Big Foot offensive explosion further. Walker and Spencer Volbrecht tallied touchdowns, and a Carter Hehr 25-yard touchdown catch from Jake Wedig gave the Chiefs a comfortable 35-7 halftime lead.

The teams traded scores in the second half with the game out of reach. Big Foot receiver Jordan Miller, a senior transfer from Burlington Catholic Central, scored his first varsity touchdown on a 17-yard slant from Wedig to open the fourth quarter. Miller made the grab, ran through the Westosha cornerback and stretched the ball across the goal line with a tenacious effort.

"It was really exciting to get my first touchdown," Miller said. "This team is amazing. We can go as far as we want. We have the personnel and the coaching."

Wedig had an efficient day, completing six of nine after misfiring on his first two attempts to finish with 97 yards and two touchdowns.

"Westosha was playing pretty loose," he said. "Bubbles and screen passes were working. Our mindset was to get out, punch them in their mouth, and run it down their throats. We got two great running backs."

Junior running back Mason Dixon complemented Walker with 88 yards on 12 carries.

Overall, Big Foot's power overwhelmed Westosha. Head coach Rodney Wedig was confident going into the game.

"I told the team if we don't shoot ourselves in the foot, with the weapons we have, it will be tough to stop us," Rodney Wedig said. "The passing game was on, and we had people making plays all over. It was a great way to start."

Coach Wedig commended Walker's performance.

"I noticed ever since track he has stepped up his approach to the game and practice," he said. "As far as a rare athlete, he's probably more athletic than his brother Mike. He's so smooth, sometimes he looks like he isn't even going full speed. He made a pretty good defensive team look like they were slow."

Rodney Wedig said an early third and long helped his team pull away.

"Jake hit Matt Ripkey on a nice seam pass when we were up 14-7," he said. "We were able to score there, then Shaun Sovsky made a nice pick. After that, we had two blocked punts that kept us on a short field."

Big Foot (1-0) travels to Delavan-Darien, a Division 3 state semifinalist a year ago, next Friday night. Rodney Wedig said the Chiefs will have to slow down the speedy Comets.

"We have to adjust to their speed," he said. "It will be a shootout. Their quarterback is a very good athlete."