Basketball (W), News Feed (goheat.ca) | April 4, 2012

Jessica looks to ‘Jaz’ up the Heat

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Jessica Jazdarehee a guard from Coquitlam has signed with the Heat.

The Heat women’s basketball team has recruited Jessica Jazdarehee, a 5’8” guard from Gleneagle Secondary in Coquitlam to help them continue to grow the program in the CIS (Canadian Interuniversity Sport) next season.

Jazdarehee, was her team’s co-mvp this past season and has played on the senior team since grade nine; she has been playing organized basketball since she was in grade four. Jessica continued to hone her game with club basketball as she was a part of the Drive Club for two years, playing U15 and U17 (when she was U16), she is currently playing for her school's club team, the Renegades.

“My strengths are that I like to drive and penetrate the defense, and to push the ball up the floor,” says Jazdarehee. “I hope to bring my speed and competitiveness to the team.”

UBC Okanagan Heat head coach Heather Semeniuk is excited to pick up a new staring recruit to help her team improve in Canada West next season.

“I am very impressed with Jessica’s drive and determination. She is a player that knows how to step up to a challenge,” remarks Semeniuk. “She loves to play the game and loves to learn and improve. I fully expect her to work hard and push others for minutes next season.”

After an exciting first year in the CIS (Canadian Interuniversity Sport), Semeniuk has a much stronger appreciation for the type of athlete and the type of person that will succeed as her team moves forward.

“We are excited to move to our second year in the Canada West. The faster and more physical game has drawn out some very good things from our players,” explains Semeniuk. “Every player from this past season is now a better player because every Canada West game challenges us to do more. I think Jessica has a great chance to embrace this challenge and become a very talented player for the Heat.”

Jazdarehee has enrolled in the Science program at UBC’s Okanagan campus in the fall and is excited to get playing with the Heat. She will be working on her shot over the summer in anticipation of having a great rookie season.

“After I came up for a visit last year, I knew that this was where I wanted to play,” says Jazdarehee. “The team was so welcoming and I really like Coach Sem. UBC Okanagan seems to be the perfect blend of academics and athletics.”

Jessica’s shot may not need that much work as she won the three-point shooting contest last year at the Provincial Championships, yet she doesn’t feel she is that great of a shooter and explains that she gets her shots from sneakiness. Along with turning her good shot into a deadly one Jessica is hoping to round out herself as a player and develop a better midrange game under coach Semeniuk, with emphasis on attacking left.

Jessica is Heather’s first high school recruit to sign up with the team, but not the only new face committed to the Heat next season. Semeniuk has Sarah Allison, a transfer from the University of Calgary set to don the blue and gold next year after red-shirting this past season.

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