In breaking though Friday to win a playoff game, the Walker football team achieved something that had not been done in 20 years.

Now the Wildcats have a chance to do something that has never been done.

Walker (8-3) travels to face top-seeded Acadiana (11-0) in a second-round playoff game this week looking to reach the quarterfinals for the first time in school history.

The 16th-seeded Wildcats are coming off an opening-round 63-21 win against No. 17 seed Thibodaux that ended a 20-year drought since their last playoff win.

Walker's only other playoff victory came in 1999 against Bastrop.

In Acadiana, Walker will face a team that has won 10 of its 11 games by double figures.

The Rams reached the 70-point plateau for the fourth time this season in a 72-28 win over No. 32 seed Benton in the first round. The Rams had three different players rush for more than 100 yards in that game.

"They're tremendous," Walker coach Chad Mahaffey said, "so it's going to be an unbelievable challenge. The guys have to understand we're going into the lion's den."

Walker took advantage of six Thibodaux turnovers in its playoff opener. A blocked punt by Dakota Wilson also proved pivotal.

Offensively, there was no shortage of star power.

Brian Thomas had 194 receiving yards and three touchdowns on 10 catches. Demetri Wright rushed for 154 yards and three more scores on 19 carries.

Walker has won seven of eight games since starting 1-2 this season.

The only blemish during that stretch came in a 35-33 loss to two-time defending 5A state champ Zachary decided in the final minute.

"I think we have a good shot," Thomas said of pulling off the Round 2 upset. "We just have to play hard and execute like we did this week."

In other playoff action, Live Oak and Albany both went on the road last week as No. 28 seeds and had their seasons end with double-digit losses.

No. 5 seed Zachary defeated Live Oak for the second time this season, winning 39-7.

In 3A, No. 5 seed Caldwell defeated Albany 23-6.

Cook, Thompson lead list of signees

Walker High star Jalen Cook became the first player to join LSU's latest signing class when he signed with the Tigers on Wednesday in the school's new gym.

Cook, the reigning Mr. Basketball in Louisiana, was one of many Livingston Parish athletes to sign last week.

Others included Denham Springs High basketball player Kate Thompson, who became the first Louisiana player to sign with Wisconsin.

Cook averaged 29.5 points as a junior, leading Walker to its second straight trip to the 5A title game and a runner-up finish. He was the top scorer on Walker's state championship team as a sophomore.

"We are very happy to have Jalen Cook join the LSU basketball program," LSU coach Will Wade said in a university news release. "His ability to score and distribute the basketball, as well as his skills on defense, will be a big addition."

The 6-foot-2 Thompson averaged 12 points and 10 rebounds in helping Denham Springs earn a trip to the 5A title game last season.

In other signing news, Olivia Lackie, Emma Hutchinson and Ashley Fogg gave Holden softball a trio of college signees.

Lackie, the three-time Class B Most Outstanding Player, signed with South Alabama while Hutchinson signed with Louisiana Tech. Fogg chose Northwest Florida State College.

Thompson was not alone among Denham Springs athletes to sign.

Tennis star Paige Duncan, who has won back-to-back state singles championships, signed with James Madison to continue her career. Softball player Paige Luquette and baseball player Gabe Spedale both signed with LSU-Eunice. Baseball player Brennan Hall is staying home to play for Baton Rouge Community College.

Also, French Settlement basketball player Serenity Smith signed with Kentucky Christian.

Scott Hotard covers sports for The Livingston-Tangipahoa Advocate. He can be contacted at or