Rio signs Lake Ridge Academy's Baines
NORTH RIDGEVILLE, Ohio – University of Rio Grande women's basketball head coach David Smalley has announced the signing of Lake Ridge Academy's Sharday Baines for the 2013-14 season.
Baines, a 5-foot-5 point guard, was a big part of first-year head coach Lisa Medvetz's Royals, who finished 22-4 after falling to eventual state runner-up Berlin Hiland in the semifinal round of the Division IV, Region 13 Tournament.
Baines averaged 11.2 points, 5.8 assists, 3.0 rebounds and 3.0 steals per game en route to earning a special honorable mention selection to the All-Ohio team.
"I'm really excited about joining the Rio Grande family, playing at the next level and continuing to get better over the next four years," said Baines, who actually began her high school career at Regina High before it closed as a result of declining enrollment. "Since I started playing basketball at the age of eight, getting the chance to play in college has been a goal of mine. I'm happy to have the opportunity."
Baines was also named to the Greater Cleveland and Northeast Ohio League first team, as well as earning a second team All-Lorain County selection.
"We're excited to add Sharday to our Rio Grande family," said Smalley. "She's very dynamic, a very talented point guard. She handles the ball well, can score and is hard-nosed. She showed all of that this past season against some very good competition."
Baines, who will major in Marketing, chose Rio Grande after also grabbing attention from NCAA Division I St. Francis (Pa.) and trio of NCAA Division II schools - Walsh University, Notre Dame College and Lake Erie College.
"She can get the ball to the glass, she distributes the ball well - she had a number of other schools knocking on her door and we feel pretty fortunate that we were able to land her," said Smalley.
Baines said she was sold on Rio after making the four-hour trek from home to visit the campus.
"I really liked everything when I visited and I loved the fact that the coaches supported me and made me feel comfortable when it came to making my decision," she said.
Smalley added that Baines - among others - will get an opportunity to make an immediate impact in the RedStorm's backcourt next season.
"We think Sharday can fill a void that we've had of late at the point guard spot," he said. "When you add her with (sophomore) Nichole Mabry, who's coming back, and a couple of the other kids that we've signed, I think it's going to create some great competition and give us a great deal of depth at that position."
Baines is ready to get that competition started.
"I think the big things I can bring to the program are my aggressiveness and leadership," she said.. "I still need to improve on my defensive skills, but that's what I want to do - get better everyday on the court."
Baines is the daughter of Tricia Baines of Cleveland, Ohio.