STUDENT PROFILE SERIES
Text and photos by Steev Riccardo
DUDLEY – Shepherd Hill senior Tina Gauvin, like her best friend and fellow senior Taylor Daniels, has been one of the staples of the high schools sports program for the past four years and even though she is graduating and moving on, she will not be forgotten.
Extremely popular amongst her friends and fellow classmates, Gauvin has made quite a name for herself at the school for her dedication to both the soccer team and basketball team.
She spent her early years living in Webster with her parents, Robert and Debra, until the family moved to Dudley when she was in the second grade. That’s when she met Daniels and since then the two have been literally “inseparable.”
After attending Dudley elementary and middle schools and playing sports with Daniels in the town leagues, she arrived at the Hill and immediately made an impact.
During her freshman year she also played softball, but it was soccer and basketball where she really excelled and was promoted to the varsity squad in both sports.
She worked hard and it paid off when she was named co-captain of the soccer team along with Lauren Barton in her senior year under Coach Sarah Garneau, and was part of an excellent 13-3-3 playoff team.
“It was very disappointing losing to Shrewsbury (in the Districts) because we had such high expectations and we outplayed them and we gave it our all,” Gauvin said. “That was definitely one of the best teams I played for while in high school, we all loved each other, and we played awesome together and we got along so well.
“Garneau was an awesome coach, I have been close to her for a while and I could go to her for help and never be nervous or scared.”
Things were slightly different during her basketball career but also
culminated with her being named a captain as a junior and then a co-captain with none other than, you guessed it, Daniels, as a senior.
As a junior she played with Rams 1000 point scorer and legend Meghan Fornaro, who Gauvin said was “amazing to play with.”
During her senior year, Gauvin and the Rams were nearly unstoppable as a team and if not for eventual state semi-finalist Holy Name, who beat them four times, could have gone deep in the playoffs. They were still one of the top teams in Central Mass.
Rams coach Jim Hackenson knows what kind of an athlete and person he is losing in Gauvin. “I had Tina in the eighth grade in Algebra class and she was a good student then. She came up to play on the varsity as a freshman. I think she learned a lot from them because she is an excellent learner.”
“She had some great games this year,” said Hackenson. “She did a tremendous job against Doherty. She is going to be hard to replace. She was the team’s MVP; she played out of position this year, and she did that for the team because that is the kind of kid that she is.”
Her long-lasting relationship with Daniels has also been a huge factor in her great high school career. “We played sports together so we were together all the time. In the summer we would be together every day and my Mom calls her, her second daughter.”
“She's my best friend, sidekick, and partner in crime,” said Daniels. “We've been inseparable since second grade. She's always been there and supported me in everything I do. I can't even picture going off to college without her next year. To think I won't be playing on the court with her ever again makes me cry and the thought of going separate ways is overwhelming. She's an amazing person inside and out with a good head on her shoulders. Everyone should have a best friend like Tina.”
“She's an unbelievable athlete,” said Daniels. “If I'd never met her things would be so different. We've had our ups and downs just like any "siblings" would. Her family's my second family and vice versa. But in the end there's nothing I wouldn't do for her. She's always had my back and looks out for me. She's my best friend.”
As far as college goes, she was recruited to play basketball at Anna Maria College in Paxton and made her decision to attend after spending a weekend there with former Bartlett hoop star and current Anna Maria basketball player Lindsay Bond. “When I went and visited Lindsay at the school, that is when I really fell in love with the place.”
Hackenson thinks she made the right choice as well. “I think she will fit right in at Anna Maria College on their basketball team. That is the right fit for her.”
As for leaving home and the school that she has been such a big part of, she said, “I have been thinking about leaving Shepherd Hill ever since my last soccer game. That is when it really hit me. That’s when I realized I was going to be leaving all my friends, this is where I met them all and it’s sad to be leaving them all, but I know my closest friends and I will be visiting each other.”