High School Sports

Athletes of the Week for September 16, 2011

The Mid-Columbia Athletes of the Week for September 16, 2011.


Zach Umemoto, Senior, Kamiakin

There are lots of things to like about the first two games for the Kamiakin football team this season.

But one of the best has been the steady play of running back/linebacker Umemoto.

The senior has rushed for 328 yards on 48 carries and scored two touchdowns as the Braves have manhandled Prosser and Moses Lake.

“I don’t feel the pressure, mostly because I have experience,” he said. “It is just stepping up into the role as a senior and a captain.”

Defensively, Umemoto has also been strong, as he recovered two fumbles and had a sack in the rout of the Chiefs.

“We are feeling pretty good,” he said. “We are just looking for another win this week (vs. Pasco, tonight).”


Favorite food: Pepperoni pizza

Favorite nonsport activity: Snowboarding

Favorite athlete: Adrian Peterson

Sports highlight: Going undefeated in 2010 regular season and reaching state championship game

Favorite class: Weightlifting

Career plans: Firefighter

Favorite stadium: Lampson Stadium, because of all of our fans

Dream vacation: Going to a tropical island and relaxing on the beach with my friends


Ellie Heiden, Sophomore, Kamiakin

For those who say soccer is a boring sport to watch, they apparently need to go check out the Kamiakin girls soccer team.

Led by Heiden, the Braves have been scoring at will this season.

The sophomore has a whopping seven goals and five assists in the team’s first four games — three wins and one loss — including three goals and three assists in a 10-0 bludgeoning of Kennewick.

“It was just seeing the field well and applying what was done at practice in the game,” Heiden said. “The defense had to get the ball up and everything just worked up top.”

Heiden credited the team’s newfound chemistry to a trip out of town this summer to a ropes course, where they learned to rely on each other.


Favorite food: Anything sweet — she loves junk food

Favorite athlete: Abby Wambach

Any famous relatives: Somehow related to speedskater Eric Heiden

Favorite class: Math; “Not because I’m good at it, but because I like my teacher.”

Last book read (not for school): The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Best song on your iPod: Waving Flag by K’naan

Career plans: Dental hygienist or something to do with sports

Coaches can nominate players by calling (582-1508), faxing (582-1410) or emailing (sports@tricityherald.com). Nominations must be received by noon Sunday.