With a scowling demeanor and a tenacity rarely matched on the pitch, Highland’s Jamiece Yizar is a nightmare matchup for opponents.
The senior Ram signed a National Letter of Intent to play soccer for The College of Idaho at Highland High School in February.
Yizar is a two-sport star for the Rams in soccer and basketball, but for the 5-foot-8 forward the game played with her feet was her first love.
“I’ve (played) since I was little,” Yizar said, “and I just fell in love with the sport.”
In the past three seasons, Yizar helped the Rams reach the 5A state tournament each year.
In 2012, Highland finished the regular season 13-3-2, but entered its district tournament as the No. 3 seed.
In the district title game, the Rams faced the Hillcrest Knights, who had beat Highland twice during the regular season. But Yizar and teammates Katie Denney and Madison Morgan each scored in a 3-1 trouncing.
As a senior and throughout her career at Highland, Yizar was a constant, dominant force both in terms of production (goals scored) and leadership.
In particular, her high school head coach Korbie Vaughan said Yizar’s determination is one of the biggest facts to why she will succeed playing soccer at the next level.
“Jamiece is a good fit because she’s a player that wants it and has that drive,” Vaughan said. “She is self-motivated and she goes hard.”
The College of Idaho — the Coyotes compete in the Cascade Collegiate Conference in the NAIA — ended its 2012 season 5-8-1 under first-year women’s head coach Brian Smith.
Smith, a three-time CCC Coach of the year, has been the Coyote men’s head coach since 2004.
“Jamiece is ultra-competitive and very athletic,” Smith said. “She plays the game with great energy and enthusiasm and is a true flyer — and will definitely be a goal scorer for the Coyotes.”
But playing soccer for the College of Idaho is just the start for Yizar. Vaughan, who played for Idaho State from 1998-01, said the pitch was merely the starting point for an amazing experience while playing for the Bengals.
“It wasn’t just learning about soccer,” Vaughan said. “It was truly learning about just how to be a good person (and) how to work hard in life. So I definitely think those are things she will learn.”
Yizar plans to study elementary education.
“I feel like I’m far enough from family yet close enough that if I get a little homesick, I can come visit them,” Yizar said. “Also, the soccer. I love playing soccer. I have since I was little and now that I get the opportunity to go play at a school it’s like a dream come true.”