Defending 5A state soccer champs reach final eight in new classification
Nov 21, 2019 05:50PM
● By Catherine Garrett
Corner Canyon girls soccer players celebrate a goal this season. The Chargers, who won the 5A title a year ago, moved up to 6A this season and finished eighth. (Photo courtesy AStrong Photography)
By Catherine Garrett | [email protected]
Three-time First Team All-State midfielder Kenli Coon scored four goals in the 6A state tournament for Corner Canyon — including their lone goals in the team’s finals two games to lead the Chargers to a final-eight showing in its first year at the 6A level. They were tied with top-ranked Pleasant Grove 1-all through two overtimes in the quarterfinals before the decision went to penalty kicks and the Vikings won 4-2.
“We battled hard,” Coon said. “I was extremely proud of my team. It was an evenly matched game. We fought hard and gave it everything we had.”
First-year head coach Bayleigh Steed said she was proud of her team’s accomplishments this season and their finish in a new classification. “Their performance our last game was everything I could’ve asked for,” she said. “They played so hard and so well together. They gave it everything they had and in the end it didn’t go our way; but to lose in PKs after that team had beaten us in the run of play was something I was so proud of. They fought every minute of that game and they fought together. It was awesome to see them play like I knew they could.”
After ending the regular season with a 10-6 record, Corner Canyon defeated West 8-0 with Coon scoring two goals while Aly Milford, Hallie Tripp, Jadaisha Waahile, Maggie Hart, Maryn Granger and Paje Rasmussen also scored. It was Milford’s, Tripp’s and Waahila’s only goals on the year.
In the second round, the Chargers beat Layton 1-0 after Coon put the game’s only goal in the net in the second half on an assist from Reagan Winget. The win sent Corner Canyon to the state quarterfinals.
“That game meant a lot to us as a team,” Coon said. “Moving to the final eight in 6A was a great goal for us.”
The Chargers took an undefeated record through the first six games into a Region 4 schedule that proved tough right from the start. They managed to win just four region games, yet five of its six losses were by just one goal.
“As a team, we realized we needed to make some adjustments with our formations and that seemed to help for future games,” Coon said. “We seemed to always be right there but one thing we had to do as a team was believe and stay confident, which can be tricky when we are a team that’s used to winning all the time.”
A highlight of the season for Corner Canyon was defeating American Fork 2-0 with Winget scoring a goal each half. The Cavemen went on to win the 6A title this year.
Senior Grace Jeppson said, “Our team made a lot of improvements as the season progressed. As we were able to overcome some barriers, we started to play more united.”
Coon, who signed with Utah State University Nov. 13, led the team with 12 goals this year, while Winget had nine. Willow Rasmussen added six, while juniors Willow Collins, who has committed to Gonzaga, and U of U commit Maryn Granger had six and four goals respectively. Freshman goalkeeper Meg Covey recorded eight shutouts this season.
“It was hard to see our season cut short, but in all the season was very successful,” Jeppson said. “I have loved playing with these girls all these years as we have grown and improved as a united team.”
Also on the varsity squad this season were Abbie Flamm, Maggie Hart, Avery King and Kaytlyn Scott. The junior varsity team includes Sarah Broadbent, Sage Burt, Sophie Burt, Sydney Christensen, Esme Fletcher, Brighton Jakeman, Ellie Jones, Skye Meyers, Ellie Mills, Ella Muir, Lucie Packer, Riley Stevens, Kayla Welker, Eliza Willey and Mikayla Zvekan.
“To see the girls adjust to new positions and a new formation was a great moment as a coach,” Steed said. “So much was asked of them and they absolutely stepped up to the plate. That’s what I’m most proud of.”
Steed was assisted by Ali Houghton and Krissa Reinbold on the coaching staff.
“I think next year Corner Canyon soccer will do big things,” Coon said. “They have experienced 6A and have a better idea of what it’s going to take to beat these teams. I have no doubt Corner Canyon girls soccer will continue to be successful in the future.”