A week after walking off the football field, Ridge View’s Walyn Napper proved why he’s one of the better two-sport athletes in the state. The senior point guard/wide receiver scored 28 points and dished out 13 assists to lead the top-ranked Blazers to a 89-70 victory over Blythewood on Friday night in boys basketball.
The spectacular outing came against Iowa State commitment and lifelong friend Tre Jackson, who was dominant in his own right. Jackson scored a game-high 38 points with 8 three-pointers but it wasn’t enough to overcome four players finishing in double figures for the defending Class 4A state champions.
“The transition back to basketball has been good,” Napper said. “We have an early bird class before school that we’ve been coming to so that’s helped. We’ve had a good feeling for the game but to come back and have a game like this, against someone the caliber of Tre (Jackson), is special.”
Ridge View coach Yerrick Stoneman wasn’t shy in discussing the play of Napper, a three-year starter in both sports. Napper finished with 1,537 yards receiving and 22 touchdowns in football. He also played defensive back, Wildcat quarterback and returned kickoffs and punts.
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He’s scored 46 points in two games this season.
“To me, he’s the best athlete in the state,” he said. “I don’t think there’s too many athletes that can have 1,600 yards in receiving on the football field then come out a week later and score almost 30 against an unbelievable team in Blythewood.”
Stoneman has also been impressed how his seven football players have blended in so quickly. Ridge View football lost in the state quarterfinals last week, so they’ve been on the court together for only a week.
“Conditioning for football and basketball is totally different but they’re good athletes,” Stoneman said. “They’re young and can make that adjustment pretty quick. I’m happy we’re able to share our athletes here like that at Ridge View. To play as well as they did tonight is pretty special.”
Crosby Harris-James added 15 points, Cincere Scott chipped in with 13 points and Ja’Von Benson scored 11 with 10 rebounds. Malcolm Wilson, the 6-foot-11 Georgetown commit, added a double-double with 10 rebounds and 10 blocks.
Harris-James opened the scoring with a 3-pointer and the Blazers (2-0) never trailed. The lead grew to as many as 19 points in the first half before Ridge View settled for a 47-30 lead at the break. It reached as many as 25 points in the second half.
Jackson connected on eight three-points in his 38-point effort.
In the girls game, Laila Acox scored 16 points and Kelly Alijahh added 10 to lead Ridge View to a 58-43 victory over Blythewood. The Bengals were led by Chisom Emetu with 13 points.
B – Tre Jackson 38, Julian Phillips 10, Travis Thompson 10, Range 6, Manuel 2, Samuel 2, Shepard 2. RV – Walyn Napper 28, Crosby Harris-James 15, Cincere Scott 13, Ja’Von Benson 11, Tyler Rice 7, McKenny 6, Anderson 4, Bynum 4, Wilson 1.
B – Chisom Emetu 13, Alexis Mims 11, Terry 5, Swanier 6, Gallman 4, Jones 3, Weeks 1. RV – Laila Acox 16, Kelly Alijahh 10, Sandifer 9, Mitchem 8, Hasonti 5, Daney 5, Middleton 3, Davis 2.