When Bob Fredericks took over the boys basketball program at Scottsdale Christian Academy in 1985, the school had no athletic facility and the plan he had in place was that his first head coaching job would lead to another one.
“We had no gym. We had to drive the school bus everywhere. We had to rent gyms and sometimes we practiced outside,” Fredericks said.
“I came in with the thought that this job would help me to move to a larger school.”
Twenty-two years later, much has changed as the school has moved from 32nd Street and Shea Boulevard to Tatum Boulevard north of Thunderbird Road and it has its own gym.
What hasn’t changed, though, is the man blowing the whistle in practice.
Fredericks, 50, and Scottsdale Christian, which are now forever linked, celebrated the latest milestone in his career Friday when the Eagles knocked off North Pointe Prep for Fredericks’ 500th victory.
“It’s been great and it’s very rewarding that I’ve been able to do it at one school, win all those games, four state titles and make it to seven title games,” said Fredericks, who added the school and community grew on him quickly and he has since passed up several other job opportunities.
To commemorate Fredericks’ milestone win, a banner was unveiled (although, it’s back at the print shop because the second “e” in Fredericks’ name was missing), the coach was presented with a 2-foot brass eagle and five cakes with the dates of victories 100, 200, 300, 400 and 500 were served to the standing room-only crowd on hand.
Fredericks, who is now an assistant principal at the school as well, said he plans to continue coaching as long as he’s at the school.
VOLLEYBALL PLAYERS HONORED
Phoenix Xavier’s Stephanie Preach and Chandler Valley Christian’s Chanel Brown are among 25 finalists from across the nation for National High School Sophomore of the Year.
Preach, a 5-foot-8 setter for Xavier’s 2007 state championship team, had 41 assists, 14 digs, 4 kills, 4 blocks and an ace in the Gators’ title-match win over Phoenix Mountain Pointe.
She was the Desert Valley Region’s player of the year, the first time a sophomore has won that region’s honor.
Brown, a 5-10 outside hitter for the Trojans, piled up 620 kills and a team-leading 4,523 digs. Valley Christian advanced to the 2A final four in 2007.
Winner of this and other awards for top freshman, junior and senior will be announced Jan. 30.
CLUTTERED AT THE TOP
Three teams continue to jockey for position in the 4A-I Desert Sky Region girls basketball race. Tempe McClintock currently leads with a 5-1 record, but Cave Creek Cactus Shadows and Scottsdale Chaparral have each lost just once as well.
All three teams have faced off with the other two once, and all have come away with 1-1 records.
The Firebirds will try to avenge a Dec. 7 loss to Cactus Shadows at home on Friday.
Cactus Shadows beat McClintock early in the season, but it was in a tournament and didn’t count the toward region standings.
Staff writers Kyle Odegard and Les Willsey contributed to this report.