High School Soccer

This future University of Washington soccer player is the best in the state. She plays here in the Tri-Cities

Chiawana's Summer Yates (10) was named the Washington Gatorade Player of the Year. Yates, who is headed to the University of Washington, scored 30 goals her senior season.
Chiawana's Summer Yates (10) was named the Washington Gatorade Player of the Year. Yates, who is headed to the University of Washington, scored 30 goals her senior season. Tri-City Herald

The accolades keep rolling in for soccer player Summer Yates.

The Chiawana graduate recently was named the Washington Gatorade Player of the Year. She is the first from the school to earn the honor.

"I knew I was a finalist last week," she said. "I actually found out I won on Twitter.

Yates now is a finalist for National Player of the Year, which will be announced later this month.

The 5-foot-4 forward, who has signed to play at University of Washington, scored 30 goals and had eight assists for the Riverhawks last season. Yates also was the Mid-Columbia Conference and Tri-City Herald All-Area Player of the Year.

Chiawana finished the season 14-6 and advanced to the state tournament. The Riverhawks lost to Wenatchee 1-0 in the Round of 16.

She missed six games during the high school season because of commitments to the U.S. Women's National Team, including a trip to China in September.

In her four-year career with Chiawana, Yates scored 100 goals and had 39 assists.

Yates, 18, leaves Saturday for Seattle, and she will begin summer classes Monday. She plans on playing this fall for the Huskies.

"I only had a couple of weeks of freedom," she said.

Yates, who is undecided on a major, will room at UW with fellow national team member Shae Holmes, the 2017 Gatorade Player of the Year for Colorado.

"We have played on the national team for three years together," Yates said. "I know a lot of people there. I've made a few visits."

In her time with the national team, Yates has played in Italy, China, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, Australia and England. As a college player, she won't get as many opportunities to play with the national team.

"It settles down because they know we are getting ready for college," Yate said. "You stay in the system and hopefully get called up."

As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Yates will be able to select a national or local youth sports organization to receive a $1,000 grant as part of the Gatorade Play It Forward program. She also has the opportunity to enter for an additional $10,000 spotlight grant by writing a brief essay explaining why their selected organization deserves additional support.

A Royal honor

Michael Rojas of Royal High School was named the Washington boys Gatorade Player of the Year. He is the first player from Royal to win the award.

Rojas, who has signed to play at University of Washington, scored 19 goals and had seven assists in leading the Knights (19-3-1) to the Class 1A state semifinals. They finished third.

The 5-9 midfielder also played an integral part of the defense that recorded 17 shutouts in 23 games — including two in the state playoffs.

Rojas also is a finalist for the boys National Player of the Year.

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