Hortonville’s Frederick signs with Valparaiso
By Erik Buchinger
Hortonville’s Shay Frederick signed her National Letter of Intent to play college basketball at Valparaiso University in Indiana.
Frederick committed to Valparaiso in September 2016 and made it official by signing on Thursday, Nov. 9 at the Hortonville High School library in front of teammates, friends and family.
“I’m really excited. I’ve been going through the recruiting process since seventh grade,” Frederick said. “I’ve been committed for a year and a half now, so just writing my name down, making it official and having everyone who supported me throughout all my years to come celebrate with me – it was amazing, and I’m really excited to go to Valpo next year.”
Frederick said she appreciated the number of people who showed up for her Signing Day.
“It meant a lot, and it just shows how much support I’ve gotten throughout my career so far,” Frederick said. “I couldn’t have done it without them. Yeah, I have the opportunity to play at the next level, but it also says a lot about the people I surround myself with – my teammates, my family, my friends, my coaches – they’ve done just as much as me to help me get to where I am today.”
Hortonville’s second-year head coach Celeste Ratka said she is proud of Frederick’s achievement.
“I’m really excited for her, and it’s a great accomplishment,” Ratka said. “It’s an exciting time for her and her family and for our program. She’s a great kid and deserves nothing but the best. She’s put a ton of time into her game, and it shows. We couldn’t be more proud of her, and we’re glad she’s on our side.”
After graduating from Hortonville, Ratka signed to play at UW-Green Bay, but she said Signing Day has evolved into more of a significant event since she was in high school.
“It’s become more of a bigger thing,” Ratka said. “I signed my National Letter of Intent at my kitchen table.”
Frederick said she had about a dozen schools recruiting her with scholarship offers from Valparaiso, Youngstown State and UW-Milwaukee. She went on visits to Marquette and Wisconsin and was invited to camps at Iowa and Minnesota.
“I picked Valparaiso because when I went there previously when I first got my scholarship offer, I really felt something click when I got there with the coaches, my family and the players,” Frederick said. “I just like how they run their program and what they’re all about and their family atmosphere. I thought they would be a really good fit for me.”
Since verbally committing to Valparaiso prior to the start of her junior season last year, Frederick said other schools contacted her, but she never thought of going anywhere else.
“Yeah, I had a couple pretty good high school games last year, so some people contacted me, but through it all, I was Valpo all the way, so it didn’t even matter,” Frederick said.
Though Frederick has signed to play Division 1 college basketball, Ratka said she will have to continue to work hard in her senior season.
“I’ll share this with her, but the work hasn’t ended at this point,” Ratka said. “This is just the beginning. You’ve still got to stay hungry all the way through, and she knows that.”
Frederick said she is motivated to get back to Green Bay where the polar Bears lost in the state semifinals last season, scoring a season-low 36 points against Cudahy.
“I’m looking to get back to the Resch,” Frederick said. “We’re definitely not happy with how that ended last year, so that’s at the back of our minds and is a motivator for us to come into practice every day. Getting back there and having a better showing for our school is definitely something for us and just getting better every day and cherishing my last season.”