In this edition of Reed Between the Lines: Grafton Lady Cats’ Soccer Player Jacinda Devart
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I was born in Ethiopia. When I was 7 years old, I was adopted and moved to West Virginia. I’ve played soccer all over the east coast. I love traveling, making little kids laugh, and spending time with my family. I have a wicked sense of humor and I am as sarcastic as they come.
When did you first decide that you wanted to get involved with soccer?
I first tried basketball, but my coaches didn’t think I had any talent. So I found a soccer coach who didn’t care that I didn’t speak very much English. I fell in love with the sport and never looked back.
Who is your favorite sports hero and why?
Tobin Heath. Her footwork is magical, and I love how chill she is on and off the field.
What are your plans after high school?
I plan to attend college, study criminal justice and hopefully play soccer collegiately.
What is your favorite movie about sports?
What is the most bizarre question you have ever been asked by someone about soccer?
When I was younger I was always the tallest kid on the team, even when I was playing with the boys. Parents would always make comments and some would even ask me how old I was. That was annoying and now I am one of the smallest players on the team, so it seems hilarious and even more ridiculous.
What is the one thing you always do after winning a big match?
Honestly win or lose, I do the same thing. When I am playing travel soccer I always take a nap and for high school soccer I look for cheese fries.
What advice would you give to kids who are aspiring soccer players?
First, always believe in yourself no matter what anyone tells you and never be afraid to make mistakes. But you will also have to put the work in to be the best player you can possibly be. I really believe every soccer player should know how to juggle and get as many daily touches on the ball as they can.
What are your best and worst memories in athletics?
I hope my best memory is yet to be made, but so far it would be winning the West Virginia State Cup for the first time with my travel team. Regionals were in Rhode Island that year and getting to represent our state was an amazing experience that I will never forget. My worst memory is most definitely tearing my ACL in a travel game my freshman year. Sitting out of soccer for an entire year and all that rehab was agonizing.
If you could be a successful professional athlete in any other sport, what would it be?
Probably track, specifically a relay runner.
What one word or phrase do you think describes you?
I am very competitive.
Where is your favorite away venue to play soccer?
Phillip Barbour. I really like the color of their field.
Describe the difference of playing on turf versus playing on grass.
The ball moves faster on the turf which makes it a faster-paced game. I think it’s easier to complete passes on turf because the surface is level, but it’s also easier to get hurt on turf. Around here when we play on grass fields, you never know what the quality is going to be, so it makes playing a little more complex.
You get to spend the day with anyone (past or present), who do you choose and why?
Probably my birth parents. It would be amazing to see them again and I have a ton of questions that I would love to ask them. I really hope they would be proud of who I have grown up to be.
What would you say to a teammate who is really struggling to perform on a particular day?
I would tell them that one day doesn’t make or break anyone. I would remind them that they have got this and to not give up.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I hope to be making a difference in the world, living a happy life and traveling the globe.
What do you think you do well as an athlete?
I’m really aggressive, I read the field well, I am very technical with the ball and I never give up. And through my injury I have learned to be a better teammate and always want to make sure injured teammates know they are still vital to the team.
What would you say to someone who really doesn’t understand soccer?
Soccer is a beautiful game so don’t be afraid to ask questions. You can really just sit back, watch and enjoy.
Give me one word to describe your current head coach, Lorraine Isner.
What did you think of these questions?
Overall, they were pretty good questions and really made me think.
*Each week the Mountain Statesman features a coach, player or personality from Taylor County. We hope you enjoy the chance to learn a little bit more about them.