Northwestern senior Tayson Parker became the second-leading scorer in Northwestern history and the sixth-leading scorer in Howard County history earlier this month as he totaled his career points to 1,371.
Scoring a season-high total of 41 points to lead the Tigers against the Frankfort Hot Dogs (72-61), Parker pushed past former players Josh Maggard (1,362) and Zavier Sanders (1,370) to secure the number-two spot in school history. The number-one seat currently still is held by Austin Parkinson (1,667), but Parker said he was not focused on beating the record by the end of his high school career.
“I don’t aim to beat it. I just go in the flow of the game … Obviously, it’s a team sport. It’s not an individual thing. I just aim for team success. If I don’t make it, I don’t make it. If I do, it’s cool. Ultimately, I aim for the team over the scoring,” Parker said.
The Indiana Wesleyan recruit moved to Howard County as a sophomore, so his second-place spot was accomplished in about two–and-a-half seasons. According to Tigers Head Coach Jim Gish, Parker’s achievement was especially impressive because of that. Gish said he believes Parker has a chance to beat Parkinson's record but agreed the Indiana All-Star candidate was not a player to focus on his individual stats.
“I think Tayson has done a nice job of letting the game come to him. He’s a very good scorer. He’s shown that he can score against multiple defenses … He’s not one to focus on that scoring title. We want to win basketball games, and he’s a big part of that. So far, we’ve accomplished that goal, and I know he wants to continue to do that,” Gish said.
The Tigers team is currently 8-3 on the season. Northwestern secured wins against Madison-Grant (72-47), Eastern (49-42), Western (57-44), Mississinewa (55-51), Taylor (60-42), Elwood (72-32), Frankfort (72-61), and Clinton Central (59-42). The team has only suffered three losses against Lafayette Central Catholic (37-55), Maconaquah (43-50), and Hamilton Heights (58-76).
So far, Parker and Gish felt the team was on the right track for a successful second half of the season. Parker said the Tigers need to work on some defensive techniques first before being ready to compete in the conference tournament and post-season.
Looking ahead, the Tigers have a couple of big games on the schedule. The team will play Tipton and Lewis Cass in the upcoming Friday night games, both conference foes.
“Tipton, Cass, those are some good conference games. Those are a push for a good chance to play in the championship game and if not win it. We’ll see how it goes,” Parker said.
Northwestern will travel to Tipton this Friday, Jan. 17, to take on the Blue Devils at 7:30 p.m.