by Mike Meekhof
It was a 50-50 tie, 3.8 seconds left as Jarvis Walker stepped to the free throw line for Muskegon. The difference between overtime and a win was 15 feet away. All Walker needed to do, was sink one of his two free throw opportunities. He not only made one, he made both and sent Muskegon home a winner in the final game of the 2019 Muskegon Area Sports Hall of Fame Classic. It was without a doubt the best game of the three and will go down as an instant classic. East Kentwood led most of the first half, as they led 16-11 after one quarter and 29-23 at half. Then, the Big Reds started scrapping back, as they got to within one at the end of the third quarter and led by three toward the end of the game. But the Falcons weren’t done, as EK made a quick bucket and a free throw to knot it up at 50 with 47 seconds to play (what eventually led led to Walker’s winning free throws). Whether Walker made or missed the game winner wouldn’t have defined him at all as a person, as Big Reds head coach Keith Guy told him before he stepped to the line “whether you make it or miss it, I still love you, your’e built for these moments”. When Walker was asked if he’d felt any pressure going up to the line for the final free throws, he said “it was no surprise” and he just really focused and told himself he was going to hit it. Walker finished with 19 points on the night and the Big Reds advance to 2-0 on the season. They’ll take the court next on Saturday, January 4th at the Muskegon Basketball Showcase against Chicago Curie.
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