One possession late in Cary-Grove’s Class 4A McHenry Sectional semifinal game against Huntley succinctly illustrated what guard Beau Frericks meant to the Trojans.
Trailing by a basket, with just less than a minute to go, Frericks took the ball, drove on the Red Raiders’ 6-foot-3 Uchenna Egekeze, perhaps the best defender on the floor, and tossed in a tying layup, making it 44-44.
At that moment, Frericks would not be denied. C-G eventually won that game, 49-46, in double overtime, which wound up being the end of its season. Two days later, the IHSA ended the boys basketball state tournament series for concerns regarding the COVID-19 outbreak across the nation.
Frericks, who led the area in scoring (20.2), 3-pointers (94) and free-throw percentage (88.7), helped C-G to its most wins in school history at 31-3, the Fox Valley Conference championship and its second regional title in school history. For his efforts, the 6-foot-1 senior is the Northwest Herald Boys Basketball Player of the Year.
Frericks, who will play at NCAA Division II Lewis University in Romeoville, joins Kevin Kaplan (1999) as the only Trojans to win Player of the Year.
One of Frericks’ C-G heroes while growing up was guard Jason Gregoire, who he passed as the Trojans’ career scoring leader this season. Frericks finished with C-G’s career mark (1,540) and season mark (680 this season).
Frericks answered these questions from Northwest Herald sports writer Joe Stevenson.
Your father Lance played NCAA Division I soccer at Western Illinois University and your sister Frankie plays at D-I Stetson. What got you more interested in basketball?
Frericks: I remember being in eighth grade and feeling stressed about choosing to concentrate and be the best at one specific sport. Freshman year basketball season, I had an epiphany and fell in love with basketball. I never looked back. Also, my Grandpa Harper played in college. He and I were a lot alike.
What other sport would you be good at?
Frericks: I played baseball and soccer my whole life until freshman year. In soccer, I was fast and physical, and in baseball I was a good shortstop and pitcher.
Who was your favorite Cary-Grove player to watch while you were growing up?
Frericks: Jason Gregoire for sure. I would go to watch him when I was in middle school.
If you scored a touchdown in football, what celebration would you do with your teammates in the end zone?
Frericks: We would do the “Renegade” dance from TikTok because it’s so funny.
What is the last really good book you read?
Frericks: “Mind Gym: An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence”, by Gary Mack and David Casstevens, because mental toughness is essential.
What would be your dream job?
Frericks: To continue playing basketball after college. Then, I’d become a basketball coach.
What is your favorite pregame meal?
Frericks: A honey-baked ham sandwich and grapes. Shout-out to my mom (Kristin) for always getting me one.
What is the best sports fashion advice you can offer?
Frericks: Roll your shorts once. No baggy shorts. And you have to scrunch your socks.
If you had next at the gym and you could play with any four guys from history (who are not from C-G), who are you picking?
Frericks: Jimmer Fredette, Tyler Herro, Shaquille O’Neal and Giannis Antetokounmpo.
What video game are you best at?
Frericks: I never liked video games and I don’t play them.
What is something a lot of people don’t know about you?
Frericks: I enjoy hunting and fishing and am an outdoorsman.
What defender in the FVC gave you the most problems?
Frericks: Clark Cunningham and Sean Pedersen on my own team in practice. Clark was the best defender and I give him credit for my success in games. In terms of opponents, the box-and-1 and junk defense schemes on me, most of the season, were tough, but they made me a better player.
What are your three favorite sports movies?
Frericks: “Coach Carter,” “Hoosiers” and “The Blind Side.”
Is there any significance to wearing No. 2?
Frericks: I have been No. 2 since second-grade hoops.
What is the funniest thing that happened to you during a game?
Frericks: During the regional championship, I was throwing a souvenir T-shirt into the crowd and my fist accidentally hit Mikey Clarke in the jaw.