Energized Bailey will put charge in Rio Grande women’s program

Published 10:09 pm Saturday, April 8, 2023

Rock Hill Redwomen All-Ohio senior guard Hadyn Bailey signed a letter-of-intent to play basketball for the University of Rio Grande RedStorm. Attending the signing ceremony were: seated left to right, sister Myles Bailey, mother Amanda Bailey, Hadyn, Rio Grande assistant coach Brandon Bias, and brother Champ Bailey; standing is Rock Hill girls’ head coach and Hadyn’s father Eric Bailey. (Tim Gearhart Sports Photo for The Ironton Tribune)

By Jim Walker


PEDRO — The Energizer Bunny has nothing on Hadyn Bailey.

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When the Rio Grande RedStorm coaches watched Bailey play, two things kept jumping out at them: work ethic and energy.

Especially energy.

It was those things and more that led the RedStorm to sign Bailey to a letter-of-intent on Friday.

Rio Grande assistant coach Brandon Bias said the RedStorm staff is impressed by Bailey’s skill set including her energy.

“It was just her work ethic and her energy was relentless on both ends of the floor and her ability to knock down a three. For a team (Rio Grande) that averaged 97 points a game last year we only made three 3s, so she can hit a 3,” said Bias.

Rio Grande recruit Hadyn Bailey

Bailey scored more than 1,000 points in her career and she was a Southeast All-District selection the past 2 years and a two-time All-Ohio honoree. Her efforts help the Redwomen post a 17-7 record and win the program’s first sectional title since 1997.

But her trademark was her hustle and defense.

“I just want to bring some energy and effort to their team. Yeah, I’d love to score but that’s not my number one priority all the time. If I’m not scoring, I’ll play hard on defense, I’ll hustle after balls, whatever they want me to play or do,” she said.

Bailey said there wasn’t any doubt that Rio Grande was her choice.

“It felt like home as soon as I went there,” said Bailey who didn’t even entertain any other offers she received.

“I look up to my father (Eric) and he’s always been my coach and they remind me exactly of dad. They all treated me well so I was like, yes! It was great.”

Bailey started playing basketball in the first grade but she did play other sports such as softball and soccer.

“That’s always been my main sport,” she said. “I played the other sports just for fun because my friends played them and it kept me active, but basketball has always been the number one priority. It’s never been a question to me that anything came above basketball sports-wise.”

Bailey said Rio Grande not only had a really good team this past season but returns most of the players for next year. She is uncertain what role she will be asked to perform but she just wants to contribute.

“I’m willing to play whatever they want. If they want me to play post I will. But I’m sure they will not,” said the 5-foot-4 Bailey with a huge grin across her face.

“I’m not sure what kind of playing time I’ll get, but I’m hoping to get as much as I can. Whether I get five seconds or five minutes, I’m willing to play whatever. I’m just there to get better and work my way up. I’m starting out as a freshman so it’s going to be hard. But I’m willing to work.”

Bias said Bailey’s versatility gives the coaching staff a lot of flexibility in regards of how to utilize her.

“We won’t know what her role will be. She brings a lot to the table. She can dribble, she can play defense, she make a shot. So, it’s going to be interesting to find out what role she’ll adapt to. But I guarantee whatever we asked her to do, she’s going to do it.”

Bailey was always assigned the opponent’s best player and she relished the challenge.

“Ever since I’ve been little and played basketball, I’ve always been kind of the defensive person. I can also score and get to the basket, but defense has always been my number one thing. Love when dad had me guard the best player.”

In the final regular season game against Leesburg Fairfield, Bailey was assigned the best player and she turned in a stellar performance.

‘I’m very determined. I try to keep the player to zero points if I can. In our last game (coach Eric Bailey) had me guard one of their best players and he said, ‘I don’t care what happens in the game, don’t let her score.’ And we were at halftime and she had no points,” said Bailey.

“It was just so rewarding. I wanted to do that for my team because it take a lot of pressure off them to score. I do it for my team but it’s also very rewarding.”

Bailey said she is still deciding between nursing and education as her major.