Jamie Loera looks to make lasting impact at MLHS

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Connor Vanderweyst/Columbia Basin Herald Moses Lake guard Jamie Loera cracks a smile during practice Thursday at Moses Lake High School.

MOSES LAKE — It’s a name that has become synonymous with athletic excellence in Moses Lake.

Loera.

And it’s almost finished.

Jamie Loera is the last of four siblings to don the maroon and gold, wowing crowds on the hardwood. Her big brother Josh was an all-state quarterback before playing basketball at Big Bend, eldest sister Jordan reached a state final before moving on to the University of Oregon, and middle sister Jessie holds the single-game scoring record with 37 points and helped the Chiefs complete an undefeated regular season en route to fourth place at the state tournament. More, Jessie Loera is currently a sophomore at Gonzaga University.

“Growing up I watched all my siblings play and now I’m almost finished and there’s not really anyone after me so, yeah, it’s kind of weird, but it’s exciting at the same time,” Jamie Loera said.

This, her senior season, certainly has been exciting for Jamie Loera and the Chiefs.

Moses Lake (11-0) is ranked third in the RPI poll with wins over No. 4 Bellarmine Prep, No. 10 Sunnyside and No. 12 Chiawana. Expanded to Class 3A, Moses Lake is the only team that has beaten second-ranked Kamiakin.

Like her two sisters before her, Jamie Loera is the lead guard on a team with state championship aspirations.

Jordan Loera made the final game in 2008, while Jessie and Jamie combined to start the 2015-16 season 23-0 before losing to also unbeaten Central Valley in the first round of the state tournament.

“All of my siblings and I have wanted to be that player that has an impact on every team we’ve played on,” the youngest sister said.

Jamie Loera recently signed her National Letter of Intent to play for Arizona State University, joining her big sisters as Division I basketball players. As a junior, Jamie Loera averaged 18 points, seven rebounds, four steals and four assists per game and was also voted Associated Press All-State honorable mention.

So, what’s the common denominator?

“Their parents,” head coach Matt Strophy said. “Just the guidance, the dedication that Mom (Lori) and Dad (Javier) have to the craft of basketball. They all love it. Every one of them — brother, mom and dad, aunts and uncles — everybody in that family loves basketball. They live and breath basketball.”

Of course, there are also the measurables. Jordan Loera was a 5-foot-9 guard that could score at will, holding the career mark at Moses Lake with 1,914 points. Jessie Loera, although a little shorter at 5-foot-6, was a terror defensively and played a cerebral brand of point guard. Jamie Loera, at 5-foot-9, has played full-time point guard the last two seasons in addition to topping the 1,000-point mark.

“They have physically the tools to be fantastic and I guess I should also throw in the work ethic because when some girls are out at the lake having fun Jamie might be in the gym shooting 500 shots,” Strophy said. “The dedication to their craft is also in there.”

But what sets the trio apart, and something Jamie Loera has been able to take advantage of the most due to her age, is an understanding of the game. As the youngest, Jamie learned from her older siblings, especially the two years in the Moses Lake back-court with Jessie.

“I always looked up to Jordan because she was the one who had the most years without a sibling because Jessie had two years with me and I had two years with her,” Jamie Loera said. “So, I always knew that Jordan had to talk to herself and push herself and the best thing about my first two years is that I had Jessie.

“She made me a better player and even today as I’m by myself in high school they’re both pushing me or telling me all this advice so definitely their help has been key in everything.”

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