Tom Smart, Deseret News
Davis' Katie Taylor and Woods Cross' Elysia Broderick battle as the prep season opens.

KAYSVILLE— It's not a simple thing to walk in Kenzie Harrison's shoes these days. Harrison, a freshman for Davis, faced a rather unenviable task of making her varsity soccer debut by trying to fill in for injured star Colette Jepson.

Jepson, an all-state selection as a junior, led the Darts in scoring with 29 goals last fall. But a broken toe sidelined her on the eve of her senior season.

Enter Harrison — a wide-eyed freshman well aware of Jepson's playmaking reputation.

"I never played with her, but everyone was saying, 'Colette scores all the goals. Colette is our main player,'" Harrison said. "So I just think we told ourselves that we don't have her any more. We just need to do it with what we got."

Judging by the role she played in Davis' 4-1 season opening victory over Woods Cross, Harrison might have created a little buzz for herself as a force on offense.

She accounted for half of the Darts' goals — scoring one in the first half and another in the second.

Harrison produced her first goal in the 32nd minute when she dumped the ball off parallel to the right post and just pushed it past the outstretched hands of Mercadi Nye. Harrison's shot sputtered for a second, slowing down as it reached Nye's fingertips. But the ball eluded her grasp and rolled into the back of the net.

The shot gave Davis a 2-0 lead going into halftime. Harrison just missed on making it 3-0 in the 39th minute when Christine Taylor set her up with a cross from the far side to the center of the penalty area. Nye came out and successfully blocked Harrison's drive the second time around.

The Darts picked up more momentum in the second half when junior Bailey Eames headed the ball into the corner of the net in the 50th minute for a 3-0 advantage. Harrison capped off the scoring for the Darts when she finished on a pass from Eames a couple minutes later to give them a four-goal lead.

Davis coach Souli Phongsavath liked how his young team responded to the absence of a key player like Jepson.

"It will be a blessing in disguise because the team we have now is young and will learn to work without her anyway — because she won't be here next year," Phongsavath said. "Now we have to learn to go forward as group a little bit and that will be good for the rest of the team."

Davis effectively held Wildcats star Niki Fernandes in check. Fernandes tried to drive through the Dart defense a handful of times in the first half, but ended up being met by two or three defenders before she could cover enough ground to create a shot on frame.


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