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Davis Journal

From last to best: Bountiful secures region boys soccer championship

May 12, 2023 11:04AM ● By Josh McFadden

The last five seasons have been interesting to say the least for the Bountiful boys soccer team.

Going back to 2019, the Redhawks (or Braves as they were known then) placed last in Region 5 with a 3-7 mark and went 4-9-2 overall. The following season was the strangest in Utah school history, as the season was cancelled after a couple of games because of the COVID-19 pandemic. After returning to the field in 2021, Bountiful went 7-3 and took first in the region. Last season, the team reverted to its 2019 form, going 3-7 once again in Region 5 and coming in last. 

True to the recent pattern, this year’s squad won the region, completing an impressive turnaround from the previous year.

Bountiful went 7-3 in league play and 9-5 overall in the regular season, outscoring its opponents 22-11 along the way. The Redhawks played strong defense, posting four shutouts and having nine other games in which they surrendered just one goal. No team had more than two goals against Bountiful all year. 

Down the stretch, the Redhawks won their final three regular-season games. They also prevailed in five of their final six contests. The only loss during that span was in a shootout to Box Elder when the Bees outshot them 8-7 in a thrilling match. 

With a region title in hand, Bountiful waited for their playoff seeding, which the rating points index determined. The Class 5A state tournament began May 12, with Bountiful hoping to secure a first-round bye, which goes to the eight highest-seeded teams. Higher-seeded teams get home games in the first two rounds of the tournament, plus in the quarterfinals. The semifinals take place May 22 at Zions Bank Stadium in Herriman. The finals are May 25 at America First Field in Sandy. 

The Redhawks used three goalies this season, with Joey Naegle getting 1.5 shutouts. Nash McReynolds and Nick Anderson also saw time in the net and had one shutout and 0.5 shutouts, respectively. Offensively, Bountiful didn’t light up the scoreboard, but the team did get contributions from nine people in the scoring column. Raymond Robinson led the way with eight goals. Elias Pacheco and Javier Moreno each had three goals in the regular season. Moreno paced the Redhawks with five assists, and Pacheco had three. 

Despite its rough regular season a year ago, the Redhawks had a surprising playoff run. Bountiful had the No. 32 seed in the tournament but posted wins in rounds one and two. The team came up short in the quarterfinals in a 2-1 loss at Provo. In 2021, Bountiful lost in the second round. λ