Seach set to run for Seton Hall

Apr. 14, 2014 @ 11:45 PM

Bailey Seach has the drive to be successful. It’s an innate part of her personality.

It’s, in large part, why she’s accomplished so much at Bishop McGuinness, even after shifting focus to running relatively late. It’s also led her to sign with NCAA Division I Seton Hall University to continue her running career.

“It’s really exciting,” she says. “When I started running, I never knew this would happen. It’s really rewarding to run in college after putting so much work and time into it. I don’t think I would’ve stopped running after high school – I don’t think I’ll ever stop running.”

Seach, the daughter of Pamela and Robert of Winston-Salem, began running in middle school at St. Leo’s. But her focus from elementary school into high school was largely on playing soccer.

But as she reached her sophomore year, Seach could sense the growing strain between school and club soccer and running. She knew there’d reach a point when she’d have to make a decision, and she chose running cross-country and track.

“By sophomore year, I knew I was happier with running, “ she says. “It was becoming more obvious to me as I was going to soccer practice that it was tiring me out and I wasn’t finding it as rewarding anymore. Running was new and so exciting to have success in it.

“It was really surprising to my parents at first, because I’d been playing soccer since I was in like third grade. But, overall, it wasn’t surprising. I knew inside that running was what I wanted to do.”

Seach worked her way up from the bottom early on. She wouldn’t allow herself to settle for average. Instead, she and her teammates pushed each other to complete Villains coach Robert Youtz’s grueling training regimen and even added some things on her own to perform at the highest levels, even after suffering a stress fracture as a sophomore.

“She does a lot of extra stuff, like yoga, to really benefit herself,” Youtz says. “And she really puts in the extra miles. She’s also a good leader, going above and beyond, and she’s just a student of the sport. She knows a lot about it. That’s really helped her. The nutrition, the sleeping, the hydration  – doing the small things to make sure she’s in the best shape to do well.”

Seach helped key Bishop to back-to-back NCHSAA 1A state championships during her junior and senior seasons (the boys team also won state titles). As a junior, she also helped her 4x800 relay team win the state title and finished second in the 800.

As it came time to consider colleges, she started off looking at schools with physician assistant programs. Seach, who has family nearby in Connecticut, contacted legendary Seton Hall coach John Moon over the summer and into her senior year.

Although she also considered schools including UNC Asheville and Baylor, Seach visited the campus in South Orange, N.J. several times, and she decided that’s where she wants to go.

“It was mainly coach John Moon,” she says of her decision. “He’s such an amazing coach. All the athletes there when I made my official visit talked about him and just having such a great experience. You want to make sure you’re with a good team and a good coach, and I really like the team and the coach.

“It was really tough. I kept having to ask for extensions from Coach Moon because I was so nervous to finalize it. But, in the end, I feel comfortable and confident about it.”