Banned From Playing Basketball With the Boys

Teammates' parents didn't complain until 6-foot girl blocked boys' shots.

ByABC News via logo
May 24, 2008, 9:54 AM

May 24, 2008 -- An Oregon basketball player is being kicked out of her basketball league -- all because she's a girl.

Jaime Nared may be only 12 years old, but she's called a basketball powerhouse by teammates and already stands over 6 feet tall.

Jaime is such a good basketball player her coach and parents decided she should play in the boys' league.

"I think I do a little bit better when I play with the boys," said Jaime, "because I push myself even harder playing with them."

Her coach said the other players' parents were fine when Jaime joining the team until she outshone their sons on the court.

"They were great ... until she blocked the first shot. Then they were like, 'Hey, we don't want this big kid coming out and making us look bad,'" said Michael Abraham, Jaime's coach.

After parents complained, The Hoop, a private league that organizes the games, told Jaime she could no longer play with the boys, citing a rule that bars mixed-gender teams.

That decision has frustrated many.

"Why would you have an issue with a kid wanting to be a kid?" said Jaime's dad, Greg Nared.

Having a girl on their team hasn't been an issue, said Jaime's teammates.

"Her greatness ... sprinkles off and goes onto us," said fellow teammate Joey Alfieri. "[It] makes us better as a player too."

Her teammates even wrote letters to The Hoop saying they didn't think the decision was fair, according to Jaime.

Jaime has played with the team for more than a year but now she can only practice with her teammates. During games, she has to play with an all-girls team.

"I don't understand why they wouldn't want me to play with them, just because I am a girl," she said.

Sports play a big role for the entire Nared family. Her father managed golfer Michel Wie and used to work for Tiger Woods. And Jaime's sister is on a basketball scholarship at the University of Maryland.

And though she isn't even in high school, Jaime already has been offered a scholarship to Oregon State, according to her coach, Michael Abraham.

Still, despite all the support for Jaime, The Hoop won't reverse their decision.