CAPTION: Adley Canales is the new co-head coach of the Marble Falls High School golf program. Canales has a bachelor’s degree in exercise science and a master’s degree in athletic administration. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro
The Marble Falls Independent School District athletic department named current assistant golf coach Adley Canales and Lonnie Tackitt, who retired as the head golf coach at Marble Falls High School two years ago, as co-head coaches of the golf program for the 2022-23 school year.
The school district made the announcement Aug. 10.
Athletic director Brian Herman said naming both head coach was the answer when examining the needs of the program, the student golfers and the other student athletes in other sports. Only golf and tennis have a fall and a spring schedule. Therefore, the golf program needed a coach exclusively available to that sport.
Canales is the top girls basketball assistant coach on head coach John Berkman’s staff in addition to being the golf assistant coach to Rick Blackington, who resigned at the end of July.
“Coach Canales provides a lot of stability,” Herman said. “He’s the transition from old to the new tradition. We’ve had a dedicated golf coach year around. He’s passionate about basketball.”
Canales is in charge of the posts in the basketball program, specifically Lexie Edwards, who is entering her senior season. Edwards, who is expected to play college basketball, has worked very hard at developing her game, especially as both a high and a low post. She and Canales spent lots of time making her dangerous from the low block, making her a midrange jumper, and defending without fouling out. In short, Canales is invaluable to the Lady Mustangs, who reached the Class 4A regional quarterfinals — one win short of a berth in the Class 4A Region III tournament — and won the District 24-4A championship during the 2022-23 season.
Herman pointed out the same can be said of Tackitt and what he brings to the golf program. Tackitt spent three decades as the golf coach of the Mustangs and Lady Mustangs. He guided Josh Price to the 2004 individual state championship and numerous other golfers and golf teams to regional and state tournaments. He retired at the end of the 2020-21 school year and his assistant coach, Blackington, was named the head coach.
By coming out of retirement, Tackitt will have experienced golfers used to success, too. Afterall, the Mustangs finished 10th at the Class 4A state tournament and as the runners-up at the District 24-4A and Class 4A Region III tournaments during the 2022-23 school year. With only two graduating and the eighth-graders winning the district championship in May, the golf program is poised for another fantastic school year.
Blackington resigned at the end of July, which made the timing very short for a new hire, Herman said, even though the position was posted and has been the picture of stability and continuity for three decades. That, combined with the number of golf courses within a 30-minute drive of Marble Falls, makes this an attractive position. But the timing of Blackington’s departure does not.
“It was so late in the hiring process,” the athletic director said. “Many qualified candidates couldn’t get out of their contracts.”
Herman noted administrators were committed to ensuring the golfers and the basketball players each had the bevy of experienced, knowledgeable and wise coaches who know what it takes win. After all, both programs hoisted championship trophies and medals during the 2022-23 school year and competed against regional and state champions during the postseason. Both programs are used to success at the highest levels of their sport. So in trying to find a balance of providing the very best coaches available, this was the best solution, Herman said, for this school year.
“I think it’s what’s best for our athletic department and our kids,” he said.
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