Hailey Goley may only stand a few inches above 5 feet but the Tanque Verde senior is a giant. She helped lead the Hawks to the program’s first winning record in school history last year while also guiding them to a sectional playoff win – the first post-season win in program history.
This year, Tanque Verde is ranked No. 15 in the current AIA/MaxPreps rankings for Division IV which means a state playoff bid is more than possible. The Hawks are 10-5 overall, 6-1 in ranking games, 4-1 in their division and 1-0 in their section. It’s already the best start in school history.
Tanque Verde has a population of almost 600 students today but the first graduating class of 2008 only had 20 students. One of those early students was Lauren Aboud. Aboud is, basically, the school’s athletic (and academic) cornerstone.
Her early success opened the door for Caitlin Wyss and Lauren Pernu. Pernu and Wyss combined for almost 2,000 points and led the Hawks to their first 11-win season but the going was still rough. If Aboud is the cornerstone then Pernu and Wyss combined to form the foundation.
(Pernu is a senior at Walla Walla University where she is leading the team with over 35 points a game.)
The torch was then handed to Goley and Marisol Rivera and now the weight of the structure is on Goley’s shoulders along with a competitive group of teammates including juniors Bridget Spooner and Ava Rauschen.
“It’s emotional knowing this is my last year here,” Goley said after she led her team to a 50-32 win over Coolidge Wednesday night. “It was very important for me to help make my teammates successful.
“We became a family and I want to help them build something before I leave.”
Goley has a couple of options for college but all of her concentration is on her current team. She can often be seen accompanying her father, Tanque Verde assistant coach Paul Goley, in various gyms around town scouting future opponents. It’s a rare passion that can only mean a future coach is in the making.
When asked about her 15-point performance against Coolidge she went straight to the point. “We watched game film and set up a game plan and we ran our offense,” she explained.
Rauschen scored 14 points, sophomore Anisa Hermosillo added 11 and Spooner put in six along with a bunch of rebounds. Throw in first-year head coach Michael Edwards and this may be the most complete team in school history.
Edwards was an assistant at Flowing Wells prior to moving over.
Finally, when asked what she learned the most about during her time at Tanque Verde Goley responded, “I learned my teammates are the most important thing.”
Tanque Verde Career Scoring Leaders
1,052 Lauren Pernu (2008-12)
864 Caitlin Wyss (2009-13)
860 Hailey Goley (2012-current)
616 Marisol Rivera (2010-14)
329 Bridget Spooner (2013-current)
296 Ava Rauschen (2013-current)
280 Lauren Aboud (2006-09)
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Andy Morales was recognized by the AIA as the top high school reporter in 2014 and has been a youth, high school and college coach for over 30 years. His own children have won multiple state high school championships and were named to all-state teams. Competing in hockey, basketball, baseball and track & field in high school, his unique perspective can only be found here, on AZPreps365.com and on the pages of the Vail Voice and the Tanque Verde Voice. Contact Andy Morales at AMoralesMyTucson@yahoo.com