Reagan lists among the top 100 baby names for girls from 2005 and that’s not surprising to Ozark’s Reagan Baade.
“I've heard of a lot more Reagans than usual,” she said.
No, she’s not named after former U.S. President Ronald Reagan.
“Everybody says Ronald Reagan, but that's not what it's based off of,” Baade said. “My mom liked the name and went with it.”
This Reagan is an original, or at least very unique as a libero who doubles as an outside hitter for coach Adeana Brewer’s Lady Tigers.
Baade’s niche over the course of her career as a three-year starter has been anything and everything. Last season, she collected 353 kills, 341 digs, 35 aces and 30 blocks on her way to a spot on the All-COC First Team.
The 5-foot-8 dynamo excels at the net, but played along the back row during her formative years and is exclusively a libero for her 417 Juniors club team.
"It's definitely interesting going from libero all of club season and then switching roles to hitting during school season,” Baade said. “It’s a hard transition. But I love to fill all positions. When I came up to high school, Adeana wanted me to fill a role outside and I was down for that. It makes you a better well-rounded player.”
Baade has earned enough confidence from Brewer that the 10-year coach calls Baade one of the most well-rounded players she’s had at Ozark.
“For her to say that about me and knowing Adeana my whole life basically, it means a lot,” said Baade, whose older sister, Haidan, also played for Brewer. “I’ve known a lot of the girls who have come through. (Brewer) hypes me up and gives me confidence. When you know you have the support of the coach behind you, it definitely gives you a push to prove something for them and help them get what they want to accomplish, as well."
Baade is thankful Brewer saw the potential in her as a freshman and especially took note of her exceptional leaping ability. She’s well aware liberos aren't often characterized as elite athletes.
“That does happen. But I think I have proven myself and shut down those stereotypes,” Baade said. “I’m taller than most liberos and I have some 'jump' in me.”
Looking ahead to college, Baade won’t be taller than most players anywhere on the court and thus is savoring every second of her senior season as a six-rotation player.
“I'll be hanging up my hitting,” said Baade, who committed to Missouri State over the summer.
Before being a Lady Bear, Baade wants to be a District champ. A District crown has been elusive for Ozark over the last four seasons, after the Lady Tigers had enjoyed 10 straight District championship seasons from 2009-2018.
“That’s at the very top of my list,” Baade said of a District title. “There are a lot of high stakes.”