Edina High School senior to play wheelchair basketball at D1 school

Hayley Nilsen will play basketball at the University of Arizona. (Supplied)

Edina High School senior Hayley Nilsen is a standout star on the basketball court, and this fall she’ll be taking her talents to the collegiate level.

Nilsen has received a scholarship to play wheelchair basketball at the University of Arizona next year. 

The 18-year-old has Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, causing nerve damage in her legs that limits her mobility.

The daughter of longtime Edina High School girl’s basketball coach Matt Nilsen, Hayley grew up playing. In eighth grade, her disease had progressed to the point that she decided to switch to wheelchair basketball.

"We had no idea what we were getting into," said Matt Nilsen. "We just dove in and trusted the process."

Hayley currently plays for Allina Health’s Courage Kenny Junior Rolling Timberwolves team. At the University of Arizona, she will be coached by a Courage Kenny alumni and paralympian Josie Aslakson.

Hayley says after college, she would like to try out for the US team and represent her country in the Paralympics.