2018 county male and female athletes of the year
Senior is a headliner for baseball, football teams at NCHS
RIDGELY — Will Manship will wrap up his fourth annual tour of the Bayside Conference in the spring, but along the way, this two-sport star has turned plenty of heads.
A baseball and football player for more than a decade, he was a member of the Caroline County Intermediate Little League baseball, age 11-13 team which won the first-ever state tournament held in that bracket in 2013, Manship has continued his successful work in baseball ever since.
A varsity middle infielder who hit nearly .500 last season on the baseball diamond, Manship, now a senior at North Caroline, has made plenty of noise on the gridiron as well.
If he’s not in the offensive backfield, he’s an outside linebacker. On special teams, he’s the kicker. On opening night of 2017, his two touchdowns and six point-after kicks, accounting for 18 total points n his team’s 44-0 rout of Parkside High, gave him personally as many points scored as Cambridge-South Dorchester, Colonel Richardson, James M. Bennett, Kent County, Snow Hill, Washington, and Wicomico High schools — seven of the 13 Bayside Conference teams — He continued his scoring all season, as the Bulldogs went 10-0 to make the playoffs for the second of three times in a fourseason span.
Before the 2018 baseball season, Manship’s coach, Joe Bildstein, said, “Will’s gonna be an important part of things for us. He can hit, he can run, and he can play the field. He’s a solid athlete.”
A career .400 hitter so far in varsity baseball, Manship had a superlative stat line last spring. Batting .481 with 21 RBIs, nine doubles, three triples, and a pair of home runs, Manship was all but impossible to put out on the bases, going 21 for 21 at steal attempts. Despite playing short and second all season — the two busiest spots that don’t require a chest protector — he made just two errors all season, posting a .966 fielding average.
In 2018 alone, Manship was named First Team All-Mid-Shore by the Star Democrat, first-team All-Bayside by the conference’s coaches, was his team’s Most Valuable Player, and played for the Team Maryland Futures team, took part in the Maryland Cup baseball game, and was a member of the Maryland Big 26 and Maryland Classic teams, too.
“Will, Joe [Bildstein] and Tyler [Bauer] are going to be huge for us this year,” North Caroline head football coach James McCormick said before the 2018 football season. “They all go at it as hard as anyone I know.”
True to form, Manship was at it again on the football field in 2018, scoring a dozen more touchdowns and kicking over 50 successful PATs, again helping the team run the table and make the playoffs; the Bulldogs reached the Class 2A East regional final in November, the second time in four seasons.
Defensively, Manship was a force as well last autumn, notching 25.5 tackles, including seven for a loss. He notched two sacks, three pass deflections, and forced a fumble as well, as North Caroline went 11-1 on the season.
What will 2019 bring for Manship? It’s not very hard to predict. A four-year varsity starter and captain since his sophomore season, he has already been named a Preseason All-State baseball player by coaches here in Maryland, and a Preseason All-American by the National High School Baseball Coaches’ Association. The Bulldogs open the baseball season March 21 at 4 p.m. at home against Stephen Decatur.
For all his efforts and accomplishments, Will Manship has been named the first ever Caroline Times-Record County Male Athlete of the Year, for the year 2018. He is the youngest son of Becky and Vince Manship of Denton; his older brother, Brice, also went to North Caroline High, graduating in 2012.
North Caroline’s Will Manship (2) was one of the leading scorers for the football team over the last two seasons, scoring as a running back and place kicker.
North Caroline’s Will Manship rips a two-run double to center during a game at North Dorchester High last April.
A senior at North Caroline High, Will Manship is a force on both the baseball diamond and the gridiron. He has been named the Caroline Times-Record Male Athlete of the Year for 2018.