There were times last season when Beau Frericks simply could not be stopped.
The 6-foot-1 Cary-Grove guard was one of the area’s best players at slashing to the basket and finishing with a layup. If opponents gave Frericks a step, he could pull up and bury a 3-pointer.
When C-G had leads late in games, Frericks often was the one finishing off a victory with repeated trips to the free-throw line. Trojans coach Adam McCloud likened him to New York Yankees relief legend Mariano Rivera.
“He’s the closer,” McCloud said.
Frericks, a Northwest Herald All-Area first-team selection, drew interest from colleges at every level this offseason and committed to NCAA Division II Lewis University in Romeoville over the weekend. He had offers from D-II McKendree University (in Lebanon, Illinois) and Quincy University. Missouri-Kansas City and Lipscomb were two of the D-I schools that had shown interest.
“I was taking my visits to those [D-II schools] who offered me and wanted me to come on official visits,” Frericks said. “I liked the environment [at Lewis], the coaching staff, all the schools had great coaching staffs, but Lewis had a different feel. The coaches know me as a player; their offense is great. The players had a real good relationship with each other. That’s what I want to be a part of.”
One of Frericks’ hosts for his visit was former Marian Central guard Adam Pischke, the senior point guard for the Flyers, who grew up in Cary. Pischke was the Northwest Herald 2016 Player of the Year.
“Their games are very similar,” McCloud said. “A small guard who can shoot it and get to the basket, a dynamic offensive threat. When I talked to their coach (Scott Trost), he said Adam said nothing but good things about Beau. Beau’s so mild-mannered. He just wants to play basketball.”
Frericks and 6-8 forward Frank Jakubicek, who committed to D-I Belmont, were on C-G’s varsity team as sophomores, then led the Trojans to one of their best seasons in school history as juniors.
Frericks averaged 19.4 points, hit 67 3-pointers and shot 84.4% on free throws. McCloud said Frericks had some standout games at June shootouts at Ridgewood and Riverside-Brookfield. Frericks also played AAU basketball with Team RWA.
“I always played soccer and baseball through middle school,” Frericks said. “When I got to high school, I really wanted to just narrow it down on basketball. That channels my athleticism; it’s just my favorite sport. I always wanted to play in college. I’ve always known that I’m good enough, and if I work hard, there’s no stopping that. I’m just thankful that I have the ability to play and do that for myself and my family.”
McCloud feels that Frericks made a good decision by accepting an offer now rather than waiting, perhaps for a D-I offer later.
“Beau had aspirations to play at the highest level possible and, for him, the idea of being a key, key guy at a Division II program instead of being just another guy at a D-I school became more appealing,” McCloud said. “[Lewis] wants a guy who can come in and create offense. He’s about as good as you can get with the ball in his hands.”