Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.
Article Image Alt Text

Photo by Gerald Castillo

Kaylee Davis plays waiting game with pro career

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Kaylee Davis can occasionally be a little too humble.

Like when she thinks back on her junior year, the one where she tied Texas State’s record for most goals in a season, as well as ranking third in NCAA Division I, with 18 in 2018, the forward mostly points to her teammates for the root of her success.

“It was cool because every goal happened in a different way. And a lot of times, it involved a ton of players,” Davis said. “I mean, apart from scoring goals, like, it was cool to celebrate with the team.”

The Bobcat coaches noticed it about Davis, too. Texas State assistant coach Lorraine Quinn, a former Duke standout at midfielder, had been around multiple players who took their careers to the professional level. During Davis’ junior season, Quinn began to think Davis was of the same caliber.

“She’s just an absolute goal scorer,” Quinn said. “Her ability to keep her eye on the ball and notice where the goalkeeper is and then knuckleball it into the back of the net … it’s rare to find a  player like that.

Halfway through the season, though, Quinn felt like Davis would never approach the coaches about reaching the next level. Davis doesn’t think about herself in that way. So instead, Quinn and the coaches went to her, encouraging her to start considering a professional career.

Davis bought in. She led the Bobcats again with eight goals in her senior year and began training with Quinn after the season to make the leap to the pros.

But with most of the world on lockdown and every league’s season indefinitely postponed due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), Davis’ career hopes have hit a major snag.

Most leagues have two transfer windows to add new players every year: one in the summer and one in the winter. But with few regular season start dates set this year, most leagues’ summer transfer windows will be pushed back. Even if that wasn’t the case and Davis was able to sign with a team right away, the current restrictions on international travel would make it extremely difficult to get to a team overseas.

“A lot of the talk was, you know, really everything was supposed to pick up at this moment. So now that it's still on hold, it's just kind of a weird process that everyone is just waiting,” Davis said. “I actually haven't signed officially with (an agency. There was) one that I was talking to and most likely will sign with. But with everything still being on hold, there's no real contract work actually taking place for anyone at the moment. And so until that, until we actually hear, ‘OK, leagues are going to open up here and you can expect to have a window here,’ then I would definitely sign.”

Davis has done her best to stay in shape during the shelter-in-place. She can still run around her neighborhood, which is nice. She can’t go to a gym to lift weights, limiting her to mostly body weight resistance exercises. Quinn’s given her a few individual drills to work on at home, but not having a coach there to eyeball every technique makes it challenging to see how much progress Davis is making.

“A lot of Europeans were brought up messing and playing with the ball all the time. I mean, since they could walk. And so, their skill level and confidence on the ball, individually, is so much higher than it is here in the U.S.,” Davis said. “We're more just well-rounded athletes that can run and jump and do crazy things and go forever. Mentally, I feel like we're very tough, but sometimes, actually, individual skill on the ball is different and probably not as high as other countries. So that's something I've definitely had to focus on and definitely want to improve on before going over there.”

The Allen native can’t wait forever for things to open up, either. She’ll leave Texas State with a nutrition degree and plans to apply for nursing school. She won’t pass up that opportunity if she doesn’t have a bonafide offer from a team she wants to sign with.

But Davis is really willing to sign with just about any team. People have asked her what country she would want to play in. She honestly doesn’t care. She’s just waiting to sign with an agent and start fielding calls.

“(I’d be a good fit for) a team that wants a forward that will work her butt off and play hard and do whatever it takes,” Davis said. “One that I can be competitive with and have the opportunity to play and continue to grow and experience a lot of things.

“I think it's definitely out there, I just don't really know exactly what that looks like.”

San Marcos Record

(512) 392-2458
P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666