Nik Bailey All-State Honorable Mention
Sunday, July 01, 2012
Bailey All-State honorable mention
Former BNL standout to walk on at Vincennes University
BY SEAN DUNCAN firstname.lastname@example.org
June 28, 2012
BEDFORD — It’s been a big week for Bedford North Lawrence graduate and baseballer Nik Bailey.
The former Stars standout recently earned an All-State honorable mention for his efforts on the diamond his senior season at BNL and has signed on to continue his baseball career at Vincennes University.
“It’s pretty nice,” Bailey said. “It would have been awesome to have been named All-State, but to be recognized is pretty awesome, too. It’s a really cool experience.”
Bailey led the 16-6 Stars at the plate with a .419 batting average and was a force on the pitching mound as well.
BNL coach Jerry Chaney believes it’s a well-deserved recognition.
“It shows a lot about the hard work Nik put in as an athlete at BNL in all three sports (basketball, football, baseball) to get himself recognized as a player,” Chaney said. “It’s a huge deal and a huge honor for Nik. I’m sure he’s just as proud of himself as we are as coaches.
“If we could have gotten past Jeffersonville (in the sectional semifinal), Nik would have been an All-State player and I think Jay Thomas would have gotten more recognition, too.”
Bailey’s efforts over the season were also noticed by Vincennes University baseball coach Chris Barney, who has invited Bailey to join the Trailblazers this year as a preferred walk-on.
The move will reunite Bailey with fellow BNL graduate Jake Roberts, who batted .341 for the Blazers this spring with 25 RBIs and 32 runs scored.
“I talked with Jake and they’re supposed to be really good next year,” Bailey said. “They had a really good season this year. It is a good junior college for baseball. They have a lot of really good players on their team.”
Barney led the Trailblazers to their first-ever appearance in the NJCAA Div. II World Series in 2010 and was another key factor in Bailey deciding to play at VU.
“I think in the beginning he thought I was just another kid looking to try out,” Bailey said. “But he stayed in touch with me and came and watched me play. He’s a good coach.”
Chaney said Barney began showing interest in Bailey earlier this spring.
“We had been in contact with him since Nik went down for a showcase back in early spring,” Chaney said. “Coach Barney is looking at him more as a hitter and an outfielder and I think he’ll fit right in.
“Nik is a Division I athlete. Once he gets two years in (at Vincennes) I don’t see any problem for him, and Jake Roberts, transferring to a Division I and coach Barney can make that happen for them.”
Bailey has yet to decide what he will study at Vincennes and plans on playing travel ball this summer before joining the Trailblazers in August.
Times-Mail Sports Editor Sean Duncan welcomes comments at 277-7283 or email@example.com .