Evan Warden cemented a spot in Western High School’s athletic history in 2012 by helping the Panther baseball team win the Class 3A state championship.
Warden nailed down another spot Friday night when he became the fifth member of the Western boys basketball program’s 1,000-point club.
The senior guard entered Western’s regular-season finale at Tipton with 996 career points. He nailed a pair of 3-pointers in the third quarter to reach the milestone. He ended up with 15 points in the Panthers’ 78-75, triple-OT victory over the Blue Devils.
Warden said it felt good to reach the milestone.
“All season, people have been telling me I was on track or they’d let me know where I was at each and every game. I just tried to put it in the back of my mind and play my game, just keep playing the same way. I said it if comes, it’s meant to be, and [Friday] was the night it was supposed to happen,” he said.
Warden had to shake off a slow start against the Blue Devils. He missed all five of his attempts from the field in the first half.
“I’ve had games like that before,” he said. “My teammates were playing great. I feel like I slowed them down a little bit with the way I was playing. I took a few bad shots, missed a few shots. I had to get it together and play for them like they were playing for me.”
Warden came back to make 5 of 8 attempts over the remainder of the game. He drilled a 3-pointer at 3:57 mark of third quarter to crack the scoring column. He added another triple at the 1:37 mark of the quarter to eclipse the 1,000-point mark.
“It’s a fantastic thing for a kid who’s worked as hard as Evan has for us for the past four years to reach this milestone of 1,000 points,” said Western coach Bart Miller, who is in his second season as the Panthers’ skipper after a long run as an assistant to Andy Weaver.