April 19, 2016

Booyah for Bouyea

Kevin McCarthy

photo of Jamaree Bouyea

Call it a breakout season for Jamaree Bouyea. Not only did his Palma High team win the CIF Northern California Division IV championship and play in the state championship game, he was honored as the Monterey Bay League - Gabilan Division Most Valuable Player.

The 6-foot-2 2017 prospect close to doubled his point production, moving from just over eight points a game last season to over 17 this go-around. Plus, he was an integral part of 'the run' that will forever be etched in Palma High hoops lore as well as West Campus High infamy. As Bouyea described it, "we were down by 14 with three, four minutes left (versus West Campus in the Nor Cal Division IV championship matchup at American Canyon High). We went on a 14-0 run to win." Nine of his total of 19 points came in the fourth quarter and his and-1 three-point play with 29.7 seconds remaining provided the winning 58-56 margin.

But asking him about his top skills produced this modest reply: "what I do best is shoot threes and dribble."

However, Bouyea also worked hard over last summer to "improve my mid-range jumper, finishing through contact and protecting the ball. I got better and became more confident. I felt I had to do more."

Becoming comfortable as the Chieftain leader on the court, he explained, "I'm not real vocal. I won't yell at my teammates but I definitely talk to them during games."

His Seaside's Finest travel team coach, Jason Hieb, has witnessed the expansion of Bouyea's skills set as well as his point guard's greater effect. "Jamaree has always had the ability to take over games, it was just a matter of convincing him it's okay to do so because he is so unselfish on the court. Last year in Vegas, we were in the championship game of an elite bracket at the Big Foot Hoops tourney and playing our third consecutive game on Sunday in the championship game against Montana Select. We were up the whole game and then they made a run to take a one point lead with three minutes left. In the huddle during a time out, I was explaining to our guys how we had come so far to finish the game and Jamaree turned to me and said 'coach I got this.' That's when I knew he was finally starting to get what he and I had been talking about all spring and summer. He made every play down the stretch."

Hieb continued, "A pivotal moment this year for Jamaree and Palma was during league play when Palma was struggling to find any rhythm against second place Monta Vista. Palma trailed the whole game and was down eight points with 59 seconds left in the third quarter. Jamaree scored nine straight in those 59 seconds to give Palma a one-point lead heading into the fourth quarter. Palma went on to win the game easy and people talk about those 59 seconds like folk lore! That's another time when I knew Jamaree was becoming that player he had put in so much work to become. Not just with his basketball skill work but his mental approach to the game of basketball. The kid is special and his future is bright."

Bopuyea cited "my Dad, Coach Hieb and my brothers as his basketball influences." He has a sibling, Jonquis, who is a sophomore on the Cal State Monterey Bay basketball team. Do they still play each other? "We play about once a month. It can get very physical but we still love each other."

Bouyea has heard from UC Davis (unofficial visit), San Jose State University, Fresno Pacific and some other DIIs thus far in recruiting.

If this off season happens to bring a similar upgrade in his game, look for a marked increase of assistant and head coaches in the stands performing due diligence when Seaside's Finest is playing in the various West Coast and Las Vegas tournaments.