It was a St. Joseph sweep at the first Northern Santa Barbara County Athletic Round Table of 2017.
Meeting after a three-week break to observe winter break, the Round Table resumed its weekly gathering at Giavanni’s Pizza in Orcutt. During the hour-long luncheon, a pair of St. Joseph basketball standouts were each named athlete of the week.
JoJo Walker was named male athlete of the week after a sensational two-game performance last week.
“It just feels good and all the hard work is paying off,” Walker said.
The senior guard led the Knights to a pair of Pac-8 league victories, averaging nearly 35 points in the two games. In a 63-52 win over Paso Robles, Walker scored 24 points, grabbed four rebounds and dished out five assists.
Three days later, Walker poured in 45 points in a 82-63 win over Pioneer Valley. With the two wins, the Knights jumped out to the early lead in the Pac-8 standings. Currently 2-0 in league play, the Knights are 11-4 overall.
“We look pretty good right now, but I want to get better, so we can go back-to-back. Last year, we won CIF and we’re trying to do it again this year,” said Walker.
Jenna Patel was named female athlete of the week after helping to lead the Knights to a pair of league wins.
“It’s definitely a surprise, but an absolute honor,” said Patel. “Me and my team we always work hard every practice that we’re at and it’s just an honor to be honored with that.”
During wins over Paso Robles and Pioneer Valley, the junior forward averaged 18 points per game. The two wins continued a turnaround for St. Joseph. After opening the season with nine straight losses, the Knights have now reeled off four consecutive wins.
“Our whole motto is team ball,” Patel said. “We pride ourselves on playing great defense and our coach says defense wins championships, so working together in every game is what we want to do. There’s not one single person out there trying to take it all, it’s a team effort when we’re out there.”
The Round Table will be off next Monday to observe Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.