Washburn's Coley grows into her game

  • Article by: JIM PAULSEN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: March 17, 2014 - 9:17 PM

A family move and focusing on hoops molded 6-3 Chase Coley.

hide

Minneapolis Washburn’s Chase Coley nearly averaged a triple-double this season.

Photo: Kyndell Harkness, Star Tribune file

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

When Chase Coley was in eighth grade, her father, Tylor, was hired to coach girls’ basketball at Minneapolis Washburn. He begged his wife, Kelli Jo, to let Chase open enroll into the Washburn district from their home in Eagan.

The reasons were plentiful: The Coleys had lived in south Minneapolis and still had extensive ties there. Tylor, a self-proclaimed basketball fanatic who played at Grace University in Indiana, always wanted the chance to coach his children. And with Chase already pushing 6 feet, he saw the potential to turn Washburn around.

“Kelli said ‘Nooooo. She’s going to finish here and we’ll talk about high school after that,’ ” Tylor said. “She didn’t want her to make that change in middle school.”

Chase enrolled at Washburn a year later. “I remember sitting down at the table and doing a pros and cons list,” she said. “There were more pros.”

In the four years hence, she’s proven her father to be spot-on in his assessment of his daughter. She has sprouted to a legitimate 6-3, with arms longer than most teammates’ legs while possessing a sprinter’s speed and a point guard’s agility.

What Chase has done with those attributes — lead the Minneapolis Conference scoring, rebounding, blocked shots, assists and steals, and spark the Millers to back-to-back state tournament appearances — is why she was selected the Star Tribune 2014 Metro Player of the Year.

The journey to this point has been far from smooth. In 2010, Kelli Jo, a former University of Minnesota basketball player, died unexpectedly at the age of 46. Tylor moved his girls, Chase and Kendall, now a fifth-grader, to more familiar surroundings in Minneapolis.

After dividing her time equally between volleyball and basketball with her mother, Chase followed her father’s lead and focused her energies on basketball.

“Working with my dad outside of practice was tough, but it was where I got a lot better at basketball,” Chase said. “And the better I got, the more people started hearing about me.”

Still, without her mother’s steady hand, her confidence wavered. It’s one thing to play well in the Minneapolis Conference with its uneven talent level. It’s another to succeed among the state’s best players. That problem was solved last summer when she played with the North/Tartan AAU team, which also included Cayla McMorris of Park Center and Tia Elbert of Tartan.

“I was kind of nervous playing with them,” Chase said. “They had been together for a long time.”

Coley earned respect, both in the locker room and among the college coaches that continuously showed up to watch, with her abilities at both ends of the floor. By summer’s end, she was entertaining offers from multiple Division I schools.

She chose Iowa, which wowed her. “I knew that’s where I wanted to go right away,” she said.

Her future secure and her confidence at an all-time high, Coley nearly averaged a triple-double this season: 24.4 points, 18.4 rebounds and 9.4 blocked shots. She became the state’s career blocked shots leader, currently 856 heading into this week’s Class 3A tournament.

“This year has been so much fun,” she said. “Playing with my AAU team, playing with my high school team, [signing with] Iowa, it’s been a great year.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Buffalo 12/28/14 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Dallas 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Washington
Indianapolis 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Jacksonville 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Chicago 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 12/28/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12/28/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Denver
Arizona 12/28/14 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 12/28/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Cincinnati 12/28/14 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Toronto 2:30 PM
LA Clippers
Boston 6:00 PM
Washington
Orlando 6:00 PM
Charlotte
Memphis 6:30 PM
Miami
Indiana 7:00 PM
Brooklyn
New Orleans 7:00 PM
Chicago
Atlanta 7:30 PM
Milwaukee
Philadelphia 8:00 PM
Utah
New York 9:00 PM
Sacramento
Minnesota 9:30 PM
Golden State
NY Islanders 6:00 PM
Buffalo
Detroit 6:00 PM
Ottawa
Carolina 6:00 PM
Tampa Bay
New Jersey 6:00 PM
NY Rangers
Boston 6:00 PM
Columbus
Winnipeg 6:00 PM
Minnesota
Washington 6:30 PM
Pittsburgh
Dallas 7:00 PM
St. Louis
Philadelphia 7:00 PM
Nashville
Anaheim 7:00 PM
Arizona
Chicago 8:00 PM
Colorado
Edmonton 9:00 PM
Calgary
San Jose 9:00 PM
Los Angeles
Indiana 40 2nd Half
Georgetown 30
Maine 16 2nd Half
Seton Hall 36
UNC-Wilmington 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Georgia State 12:00 PM
Green Bay
Jacksonville St 1:00 PM
Jacksonville
Kentucky 1:00 PM
Louisville
Northern Ky 2:00 PM
Northwestern
UAB 3:00 PM
North Carolina
IUPUI 3:00 PM
Pepperdine
Santa Clara 3:00 PM
St Marys-CA
Oakland 4:00 PM
Maryland
Gonzaga 5:00 PM
BYU
Mercer 5:00 PM
Georgia
San Francisco 5:00 PM
Pacific
Wright State 6:00 PM
Ohio State
Presbyterian 6:00 PM
Virginia Tech
Brescia 7:00 PM
Western Ky
Tennessee St 7:30 PM
Tennessee
Kennesaw St 8:00 PM
Illinois
Colorado State 8:00 PM
New Mexico St
Portland 8:00 PM
San Diego
Wayland Baptist 8:05 PM
Utah State
Bristol University 8:05 PM
Weber State
Sacramento St 8:05 PM
Utah Valley U
Southern Utah 9:00 PM
UNLV
SD Christian 9:00 PM
San Diego St
Illinois 18 FINAL
Louisiana Tech 35
Rutgers 40 FINAL
North Carolina 21
NC State 34 FINAL
UCF 27
Cincinnati 12:00 PM
Virginia Tech
(15) Arizona State 1:10 PM
Duke
Miami-Florida 2:30 PM
So Carolina
Boston College 3:30 PM
Penn State
(25) Nebraska 7:00 PM
(24) USC
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Texas
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
Stanford
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
Minnesota
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Houston 1/2/15 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Iowa 1/2/15 2:20 PM
Tennessee
(11) Kansas State 1/2/15 5:45 PM
(14) UCLA
Washington 1/2/15 9:15 PM
Oklahoma State
SMU 12:00 PM
(2) Connecticut
UCF 2:00 PM
Houston
BYU 4:00 PM
Gonzaga
Pacific 4:00 PM
San Francisco
St Marys-CA 4:00 PM
Santa Clara
San Diego 7:00 PM
Portland

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who is your favorite Gophers head coach?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close