Petite and small built, Kenndey Warnick is nothing short of strong and bold when it comes to her speed and skill on the soccer field. Kennedy, a sophomore at Dixie High School has already achieved amazing success in pre-season this year, scoring five goals and four assists in the first three games.
Since the age of 4, Kennedy learned her passion for the game of soccer. “Every notebook she’s ever owned is covered with the word, soccer and drawings of soccer balls as well,” says Kennedy’s mother, Sue Warnick. “She’s been obsessed since that first game she played at the age of 4 and scored seven goals.”
Kennedy’s love for soccer has given her many lessons that have spilled over into other areas of her life. As a 4.0 student, Kennedy makes time to study hard and keep up her GPA. “I just always want to be the best. I came that way.” Kennedy laughed. “Whether it is my grades, playing soccer, or running, I like to work hard to be the best.” Although Kennedy hasn’t decided on a career, she is easily motivated to keep her grades up, as her biggest dream thus far, is to play college soccer. “My first choice would be to play for Utah Valley University (UVU), but honestly I just really want to keep playing soccer after high school and would just love to be able to do that at any college,” Kennedy stated.
Kennedy, a former competitive cheerleader for Raglan Cheer, was also part of the National Championship Team in 2012 and 2013. She loved doing this, but when push came to shove, she chose dedicating her extra-curricular time to soccer and gave up cheerleading after her 8th grade year.
A typical day for Kennedy starts at 4:45 a.m. with an early morning soccer practice until 7:15. Kennedy’s father, Brett Warnick teased, “Kennedy barely has time to get beautified before school starts at 8:15,” winking at his daughter. After school Kennedy spends several days a week at the soccer field with her Dad, practicing drills and getting in extra workouts. She also works at Fabulous Freddies when she can fit it in and enjoys the social interactions she gets there.
Being a dedicated soccer player gives Kennedy many opportunities. She was 1 of 4 girls invited to play for Elite Club National League (ECNL), from St. George. This entailed commuting to Las Vegas, four days a week, and then traveling to tournaments all over, such as Washington, California, and Arizona. This League currently has a 92% college placement for those who continue to play with them. “This League got Kennedy to the level she is today, which is outstanding,” Brett said.
If a player is chosen to play for ECNL, she is required to commit only to them and she cannot play high school or club soccer. This was a hard decision for Kennedy, but really wanted to have the high school experience of close friends and getting to be a part of a high school soccer team. After one year of playing with ECNL, as a freshmen Kennedy chose to tryout for the Dixie High School Soccer team and became a starter for the Varsity team. Although it was a hard decision to no longer play for ECNL, she’s loved being part of Dixie’s Soccer Team.
After the high school soccer season is over, Kennedy immediately begins playing with her club soccer team, the HEAT FC. “This year, Kennedy will have played well over 50 games between her high school and club soccer games, and she will love every minute of it,” her Dad said.
This past August, Kennedy tried out for the Olympic Development Program (OPD), where the best girls from each age group come to a 3 day tryout in Utah County. A pool of 30 girls made it out of 65, and Kennedy is one of them. Those that made this tryout, will have a second tryout in November of this year, and the new team will be determined from this tryout to represent the OPD for the upcoming year. It is a big honor to make this team and gives the girls many opportunities to be seen by college scouts and coaches.
“Kennedy is very fast, very physical, and will give 100% of herself the whole time, this is why Kennedy is so successful,” her mother said. These traits also helped Kennedy win 7th in Region in the 100M for Dixie High School’s track team. “She took 7th after coming off an injured ankle as a freshmen, so we feel like she has great opportunities in track as well as soccer,” Sue proudly stated.
“Whether it is my grades, playing soccer, or running, I like to work hard to be the best.“
Although Kennedy is an amazing athlete, her parents say they are happiest about the amazing person Kennedy has become. After Dixie High School won the President’s Cup last year, a gentlemen hunted down Kennedy’s parents to tell them what an amazing athlete he saw in Kennedy, as well as an amazing person. “She is very loyal, and a huge protector of her family and friends. She is the hardest worker and such a great example to us all,” Bret said.
This past summer, Kennedy attended an ID camp at Southern Utah University, where she completed a 40-yard dash in 4.9 seconds. To say Kennedy is fast, is an understatement, and since she is only a sophomore, we look forward to seeing her become better throughout the rest of her high school experience. Keep up the good work Kennedy. • HSSI