Stanford University soccer player Jaye Boissiere said there was a point in her college career where she was asked to consider medical retirement. Two years in, the Los Altos Hills native had played in only one game due to injuries and then missed more than half of last season.
Boissiere stuck with it, however, and the Stanford women probably wouldn’t be national champions if she hadn’t.
The redshirt sophomore scored the winning goal in the Cardinal’s 3-2 win over UCLA in the College Cup final Dec. 3.
“I was taught that if you get open and have an opportunity, take it,” Boissiere said of her shot, breaking a tie in the 67th minute. “I took it, and luckily it went in.”
It went in from nearly 25 yards out, landing in the left corner of the net.
“Jaye scored a fantastic goal,” Stanford coach Paul Ratcliffe said in the postgame press conference.
Boissiere’s heroics led to her selection as College Cup Most Outstanding Offensive Player.
The Menlo School graduate’s reaction to receiving the honor?
“Bewilderment,” Boissiere said with a laugh. “Especially since I’m a defensive player.”
The goal against UCLA was her ninth of the year and second of the playoffs. But perhaps the most notable stat of Boissiere’s season is that she played in 24 of the Cardinal’s 25 games.
Boissiere had overcome myriad injuries, including a small-intestine bacterial overgrowth that she said was the root of many of them.
“I was struggling with recovery issues and fatigue for as long as I can remember,” said Boissiere, a soccer player since age 3.
Yet Boissiere refused to hang up her cleats.
“I never seriously considered leaving soccer,” she said. “Soccer was part of my life for the time being and I wasn’t ready to walk away without seeing it play out.”
Even after all those warnings Boissiere’s mom gave her about the dangers of the sport.
“Growing up, my mom wanted me to play tennis or swim because she worried about injuries,” said the former MVLA Soccer Club star. “I told her I’d never get injured. The moral of this story is that mom is always right.”
Boissiere was quick to point out that her parents are still her biggest supporters, though.
“It’s so nice to have my parents at every game and be able to talk with them afterward,” the political science major said.
Boissiere hopes they will get to see her play for another national title next year.
“Jan. 9 we go back to campus like it never happened and start from scratch again,” she said. “It’s even harder to do it twice in a row, but with hunger and determination, we could.”