As her parents and Rio Grande head coach David Smalley look on, Oak Hill High's Taylor Hale signs with the RedStorm
Sat, Jun. 2, 2012 - [Women's Basketball]
Rio Grande Sports Information
OAK HILL, Ohio - University of Rio Grande women's basketball head coach David Smalley has announced the signing of Oak Hill High School standout Taylor Hale for the 2012-13 season.
Hale, a 5-foot-10 guard/forward, capped an outstanding prep career with the Lady Oaks by averaging 18.6 points, 8.3 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game as a senior. She also connected on 41 percent of three-point attempts and was a 94 percent shooter at the free throw line.
"I'm excited to continue my career at the collegiate level so close to home," Hale said. "I've always wanted the opportunity to play college basketball."
Oak Hill, which is coached by Hale's father, Doug, racked up some impressive figures during her time in the program.
The Lady Oaks posted a 96-8 overall record during her career - including a 56-0 mark in Southern Ohio Conference play - and finished as the Division III state runner-up during Hale's freshman and junior seasons. The team reached the Elite Eight during her sophomore campaign and did the same last season.
The list of Hale's personal accomplishments on the court is a lengthy one.
She was a first team All-SOC pick each of the past two seasons and the SOC's Player of the Year as a senior. She was a first team District 13 selection each of the past two seasons as well, and was a first team Associated Press All-District honoree last season.
Hale was also an All-Ohio honorable mention selection each of the past three seasons, while also earning Academic All-Ohio status and a selection to the Ohio-Kentucky All-Star game as a senior.
Along with teammate Brianna Butler, Hale also started 104 consecutive varsity contests for the Lady Oaks.
"We're excited to have Taylor joining our Rio Grande family," said Smalley. "She's a local product and a tremendous young lady, not only on the court, but in the classroom as well."
Hale finished her high school career with a 4.0 grade point average and was the valedictorian of her graduating class. Her academic accolades also include the Ohio Department of Education's "Award of Merit", the President's Award of Excellence, the Franklin B. Walter All-Scholastic Award and a spot on WSAZ-TV's "Best of the Class".
Hale said that the proximity of the Rio campus to her home played a big role in her decision to sign with the RedStorm.
"The support that I will continue to receive from my community while playing at Rio was the deciding factor in my decision," said Hale, who finished her prep career with 1,142 points.
Smalley said that Hale's basketball I.Q., essentially, makes her an additional coach on the court.
"She played for her dad and, obviously, he's had an impact on her knowledge and understanding of the game," Smalley said. "She sees the floor really well and is an outstanding passer. She can shoot the ball, too. All coaches feel good about having the kind of player that Taylor Hale is out on the floor. I think she's a great fit for our system. We'll look at her at the off-guard and, certainly, the three (small forward) spot."
Hale, who plans to major in nursing, indicated that her immediate plan is to become stronger - both physically and mentally - but added that there are some intangibles she feels she can bring to the Rio program.
"I'm going to bring hard work, dedication and putting my teammates first," she said. "I want to be the best teammate to all of the players on the team."
Hale is the daughter of Doug and Linda Hale of Oak Hill.