Elite athletes exhibit unique traits and strong, admirable characteristics that help them succeed in their sport.
Self-confidence, motivation, self-discipline along with focus, competitive spirit and passion are part of a champions DNA and the proven talents of Dylan Walker of Hilldale.
“He’s all that and more,” replied Earnie Ragland, the Hornets track coach. “Dylan’s work ethic matches his talent. If there’s any kid that I’d put my money on to win, Dylan is going to compete and give it everything he’s got every time.
When asked to define himself, Walker paused before speaking in a voice of confidence.
“Competitive, caring, mindful would be the best way to define myself,” replied “Dilly” as his closest friends know him best. “Most important I think I am caring because even when I was going against or trading with people I would always help them out and give them tips for how to better themselves.”
After leaving his mark on the football field as the Hornets free safety and wide receiver, the results on the track oval for Walker speak for themselves. Running the anchor leg on Hilldale’s 4×100 relay team that qualified for state, the 2021 senior completed a perfect year in the long jump event winning all six meets culminating with the a personal best effort leap of 23’1 to claim the Class 4A state championship gold medal on his six “marked” leap of the event.
“It was one of the first things I liked during track season. It was the best feeling ever because ever since my freshman year I wanted to win the long jump,” said Walker who qualified for state his freshman and sophomore seasons with Covid wiping out last year. “The winning jump was my furthest ever and I knew right when I hit the board and felt how long I was in the air it was going to be a good one.”
Walker, who also won the bronze medal by finishing third in the 168 pound class totaling 1,085 pounds at the state OFBCA powerlifting championships, explained what’s needed to be successful in the long jump event.
“The hardest thing in my opinion about long jump is getting your steps back perfectly so you have your full speed and also being able to figure out when you like to jump the best.”
After his recent graduation from Hilldale, Walker continues to display his work ethic building houses before he departs to attend college at Oklahoma State University to pursue a degree in Engineering.
With gold medals around his neck and the heart of a champion commitment for success, Dylan Walker will continue to chase his dreams clinging to the advice of his grandmother.
“She always told me to never give up and quit on the things I have fun doing. Those words inspired me to keep playing all the sports I’ve played and always give my best effort everyday.”
It’s definitely worked for Dylan Walker and will certainly provide the motivation for the future.