Bailey Frederick is constantly working toward either his academic or athletic goals at Marvin Ridge.
Frederick juggles his time between a rigorous academic schedule (where he boasts a 4.33 GPA), which includes multiple AP classes, with his roles on both the Mavericks boys’ soccer and track teams.
The Marvin Ridge senior also spent most of his high school career playing club soccer for the Charlotte Soccer Academy Predators.
For the past two summers, he also has squeezed in a summer job, where he is a lifeguard at Cureton Neighborhood Swim Club in Waxhaw.
That job often has him running from work to soccer practice. His shifts end around 3 p.m., the same time the Mavericks’ workouts normally begin.
“I usually get one of the other lifeguards to come in early for me and leave at 3 p.m., and it only takes me five minutes to get to Marvin Ridge,” Frederick said. “But, I really don’t like to be late to anything especially being a senior and co-captain. I feel like I have to set a good example. As soon as I get there, I run from my car to practice as fast as I can.”
Marvin Ridge soccer coach, Jason Zak, says Frederick’s effort just to get from his work to practice, is a microcosm of Frederick’s “blue collar” approach to everything.
“By the time he gets to the school, the parking lot is usually nearly full, so he has to park pretty far away from our practice field,” Zak said. “A lot of guys would just take their time and walk over. But he runs to every practice. To me that just speaks volumes about the type of kid he is.”
Frederick’s dedicated approach was evident from nearly the time he stepped on campus at Marvin Ridge. He was one of two sophomores to make the eventual 3A state champion soccer team that year, but also has emerged as one of the best pole vaulters in the state for the track team.
Frederick, 17, had a breakout junior season in both sports.
First, he doubled his sophomore season outputs in soccer last fall (2014), scoring nine goals and dishing out eight assists for a younger Mavericks’ squad that still advanced to the third round of the 3A state playoffs.
Then in March 2015, Frederick vaulted then a career-best 15-4.25 to claim the New Balance National title (in Emerging Elite field) in New York City. His vault also set a meet record.
He went on to better his personal-best vault in May, jumping 15-6 to finish as 3A state runner-up.
“Bailey has a great work ethic in everything he does from school to soccer to track,” Zak said. “He has that mentality that if he is going to do something, he is going to do it well.”
While Frederick had a great junior year overall, Zak and Marvin Ridge track coach, Cameron Starr, say the 6-foot-3, 180-pound senior’s best is yet to come.
Zak said Frederick can double his numbers for the soccer, and hopes he becomes a 20-plus goal scorer.
Starr said he expects Frederick to contend for 3A state indoor and outdoor titles in the pole vault.
Frederick said he is just focusing on one step at a time.
“I’m just getting used to the idea that this is my final year at Marvin Ridge, and I want to make sure I make the most of everything I can as a senior,” Frederick said. “But for now, I’m just focused on the season I’m in right now – soccer.”
While Frederick spends a lot of his Saturdays working on his vaulting with Marvin Ridge assistant coach, legendary area pole vaulter, Walt Cradle, he does not lose focus of soccer.
He plays forward and attacking center midfielder and got off to a good start as he had two goals and one assist in the season-opening, 7-0 win over Mallard Creek. He followed that up with another goal in a 2-2 tie with Charlotte Country Day.
The Mavericks hope to challenge for a Southern Carolinas’ conference and 3A state title this season.
Frederick will have a lot of help from teammates like senior, center midfielders, Phillip Papa and Bobby Muir, as well as co-captain Will Meredith and senior goalkeeper, Nick Anderko.
The Mavericks also have promising young talent like freshman forward, Patrick Papa (Phillip’s younger brother).
“I like to think that we are always in a position to reload not rebuild,” said Zak, whose starting lineup includes two sophomores and a freshman. “Our goal every year is to win it all.
“If we can get to the third or fourth round of the playoffs, you never know what’s going to happen, if a few things go your way. We hope to put ourselves in that position again.”
Frederick plans to major in computer engineering in college, and lists his top two schools as N.C. State and Clemson. He said he hopes to also compete on the track team in the pole vault.
“I’m going to choose a college based on academics and if I can vault, too, that would be great,” said Frederick. “But no matter what happens, I won’t chose to do something, and give a half effort. If I’m going to do something I’m going to give it everything I’ve got.”
Jay Edwards is a freelance writer: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Union County Boys Soccer
Players to watch:
▪ Phillip Papa, Marvin Ridge, Sr., Center Midfielder: Mavericks’ senior help organize his team, control tempo from his central midfield spot, will help set the table for an opportunistic, Marvin Ridge offense that includes his younger brother, freshman forward, Patrick Papa.
▪ Michael Davidson, Weddington, Jr., Forward: The Warriors’ offense is already in high-gear with Davidson and classmate, Jay Peeler, becoming big parts of the explosive unit.
▪ Dino Dziergas, Porter Ridge, Sr., Midfielder: UNC Asheville commit is back to lead Pirates after earning all-region, all-Southwestern 4A conference honors as a junior.
▪ Alex Grisham, Union Academy, Sr., Center Back: All-region, all-conference pick back to lead a team that is eager to prove it can be as good as, or better than, its 1A state quarterfinal run from a year ago.
▪ Roberto Palomino, Parkwood, Sr., Midfielder/Elmer Cortez, Parkwood, Sr., Forward: Both Rebels are four-year starters, all-region, all-Rocky River conference picks from a team gaining confidence with eight starters back.
▪ Charlotte Catholic at Weddington, Sept. 17: Two of the state’s perennial heavyweights always a good early measuring stick in a playoff-like atmosphere for both teams.
▪ Cuthbertson at Weddington, Oct. 14: When these two rivals collide in any sport, it’s a battle. This should be a huge five-day span for Cavaliers as they also host Marvin Ridge, Oct. 19.
▪ Central Academy at Monroe, Oct. 14: This game decided the Rocky River conference last year and could again late in the 2015 regular season.
▪ Weddington at Marvin Ridge, Oct. 12 and Marvin Ridge at Weddington, Oct. 28: The Southern Carolinas’ conference (SCC) title is often on the line in these two rivalry games.
▪ Porter Ridge at Myers Park, Oct. 19: The Pirates have held their own in the Southwestern 4A conference, but will have to show they can beat powers like Myers Park to consistently contend for a league crown.