Two Vikings named All-State

Published 10:11 am Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Things are looking good down the road for the Vidalia Viking basketball team, as two underclassmen players were named as honorable mentions to the LWSA 2A All-State Basketball Team.

Brandon Hawkins, a junior, and Gary Stewart, a freshman, were both named to the team.This was the first time either of them have received such an honor.

“They both made a great impact for us this season,” Vidalia head coach Robert Sanders said. “Brandon played the three position, while Gary played the five, but we used them in all positions.”

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Hawkins and Stewart also led the Vikings in scoring and rebounding.

Even though Hawkins had a strong season he said he was still surprised when he heard he was named as an honorable mention.

“I was shocked at first when I got the information from coach,” Hawkins said. “I worked hard this year, so I guess it paid off.”

He said being honored like this fuels his motivation to go all the way to the state championship next season. He said he was also pushed this year by his dad Tony Hawkins Sr. and also his mother, Lana Hawkins.

Stewart said being named to the team as a freshman feels pretty good, especially since it was his first year to play basketball on the high school level.

“It (this season) went better than I expected, I didn’t think I was capable of playing on the level that I did,” he said.

Stewart admitted it was tough playing down low in the paint against older players.

He said his dad, Gary Stewart Sr. and mom, Sharon Stewart, supported him all season.

Sanders said both players present a double threat on offense, and can not only shoot the tree ball from the outside, but also score in the paint.

And with both returning next season, Sanders said this is the first year the Vikings have not lost any seniors and will have the whole team back next year.

“It will be a tremendous asset to the team, especially since we are moving up in district,” he said.