School: Cuthbertson High
Notable: Walker got his first start of his career last season in the fourth week of the season but suffered a season-ending broken ankle in the second half. … Walker attended camps this past spring and summer at Duke and East Carolina.
Last September, Davis Walker was living what many sophomores only dream of.
After Cuthbertson High dropped two straight games to fall to 1-2 overall, Walker was tapped as the Cavaliers starting quarterback in the fourth week against Berry Academy.
“We started him off on jayvee and he had been playing well,” said Cuthbertson head football coach David Johnson. “He got in at the end of the Christian game and he led us down the field and threw a touchdown pass. So, we decided to start him against Berry Academy.”
Things were going well for Walker and Cuthbertson against Berry as the Cavaliers staked a 21-0 lead. But then disaster struck in the third quarter.
Walker rolled out on a running play and the now 6-foot-4, 200-pound junior suffered a broken right ankle on the play. Walker’s season was done.
“I got the start and it was the third quarter and I got tackled and somebody landed on my ankle,” Walker said. “I knew I was hurt, but when I got up I knew something was really wrong. I was excited to get the opportunity to start and I didn’t think I was playing too badly.”
The injury required surgery, which was the start of a long rehab process for Walker.
“I have a screw on one side and a plate and six more screws on the other side,” Walker said of the surgery. “It was really disappointing because I just had to watch the rest of the year.”
But Walker is back in the huddle and that is good news for the Cavaliers. Walker is 47-of-94 passing for 555 yards and eight touchdowns. In a 48-6 win against Anson County, Walker was 12-of-18 passing for 172 yards and three touchdowns.
Johnson said he is pleased with how Walker has responded coming off the injury
“Davis has been progressing every single week, so we just need to keep progressing him,” Johnson said. “Davis is a great kid, and he works extremely hard every day in practice. He is learning the quarterback position. I would have loved to have that year last year for experience and development. But things happened the way they did.
“But he is doing a great job and he is doing a good job in not turning the ball over. Like I told him at the beginning of the year, ‘You don’t have to be the one that wins it for us, you just can’t be the one that loses it for us.’ He has done a great job of protecting the ball.”
Cuthbertson (1-3) returns to the field Friday, Sept. 22 when they open Southern Carolina Conference play at home against Parkwood High. Cuthbertson faced a grueling nonconference schedule that included opening the season on the road with losses at Porter Ridge and Jay M. Robinson. Cuthbertson defeated Anson County the third week of the season before falling late to Kings Mountian Sept. 8
Johnson said he thinks the nonconference schedule has prepared the Cavaliers for the rigors of SCC play.
“We are 1-3, but we have played some pretty darn good teams,” Johnson said. “We could have played some different teams and maybe have had a different outcome in terms of wins and losses. But I don’t think we would have been as prepared for conference play. Kings Mountain is as good as any team in our conference.
“We were right there at the end with Kings Mountain. We just need to learn how to finish games.”
Walker said the key to success for the Cavaliers the next seven weeks is a simple one.
“We have to play hard and not take any plays off,” Walker said. “I’m excited and we are ready.”