Aquinas junior overcomes the obstacles

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February 27, 2007

AUGUSTA, Ga.---It's something we all take for granted: our hands. Imagine having the use of just one. Now imagine playing a sport like basketball with the use of just one hand. An Aquinas junior is doing just that.

Steven Walker loves playing basketball. But there's so much more to his story. You see, Walker was born with nerve damage to his left arm, leaving him without use of his hand. If you watch him play, it's an inconvenience, not a handicap.

"He has his way of doing what he does," teammate Dominique Murray told News 12 Sports. "He's played with it his whole life, so he's worked his game to where he can groove it and keep it going, so it's a good thing to see."

"It's second nature to him," said Coach Bernie Norris. "If you watch him play, it's not a problem for him. He goes about his business and he plays within himself."

Steven is also a little on the shy side, and didn't want to talk on camera. His teammates and coach were more then willing to.

"Steve's a cool guy," said teammate Christian Batista. "He comes to practice and he does well. He's just another part of the team."

Norris first coached Steven in middle school. He was a little nervous on whether or not he'd get hurt. Dominique Murray got to know Steven at the same time. His nerves were quickly put at ease.

"It was different," Murray said. "I didn't realize what to say, if I was going to offend him or not. After a while you just realize he's one of us and so it's just cool and you just have fun with him."

Nowadays Steven usually finds playing time at the end of game. If it's a home contest, the fans start chanting at Coach Norris to put him in. He's a true inspiration.

"He's come out here, and he's worked real hard, and he's proven to all of us you can do something if you put your heart to it, put your mind to it, that you can do it," Batista said.

Walker and the rest of Aquinas continue in the state playoffs Thursday night when they take on Whitfield.

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