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Canyon’s Hale nominated for national honor

Senior forward up for spot on McDonald’s All-American team

Posted: January 14, 2009 9:22 p.m.
Updated: January 15, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Canyon's Ariel Hale is the Foothill League's lone nominee for the McDonald's All-American Team.

When McDonald's released its California nominations for its All-American High School Basketball Team Wednesday, there was one surprise name from the Santa Clarita Valley.

Ariel Hale, a senior power forward from Canyon, was one of 35 girls from across the state nominated.

Canyon head coach Stan Delus said when he informed her of the honor/nomination, even Hale was surprised.

Hale joins a class of great Santa Clarita Valley girls basketball players in being nominated.

Canyon great Nikki Leon, now at Cal State Bakersfield, and Hart greats Ashlee Trebilcock (Ohio State) and Taylor Lilley (Oregon) were also nominees.

Hale isn't as highly touted as the other girls were because the four-year varsity player's offensive statistics don't jump out.

But Hale has been counted on by the Cowboys to provide defense down low.

"She's a hard-working kid with great athleticism," Delus said. "She does a lot to control the paint for the team and she is our best shot blocker."

Delus said there have been some NCAA Division II schools giving Hale a look.

The criteria for nomination is: "top high school players who have demonstrated hard work both in the classroom, and on the basketball court."

The 6-foot-tall senior is also an accomplished horse barrel racer who competes in national competitions.

There are 24 finalist positions for the McDonald's All-American Team and they will be announced in late February.

The game will be played April 1 at the BankUnited Center in Miami, Fla., and will air on ESPNU live at 2:30 p.m.

No Santa Clarita Valley-area boys were nominated.

Leon, Trebilcock and Lilley were not selected to the McDonald's All-American Team.


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