Hatch’s hat trick lifts BYU past Portland

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Elena Medeiros gets ready to strike on goal (Bryan Pearson)
Elena Medeiros gets ready to strike on goal. (Bryan Pearson)

Ashley Hatch and the BYU women’s soccer team extended its winning streak to seven on Thursday night with a win over conference rival Portland. For the Cougars, it was their first conference home game of the season.

Hatch scored three goals for the Cougars in the fifth, 14th and 88th minutes, recording BYU’s first hat trick since 2005.

“I knew I wanted the hat trick, so I just kept kicking and finally got it,” Hatch said. “It was pretty cool.

The Cougars’ starting backline of Annie Amos, Taylor Campbell Isom, Sarah Chambers and Avery Calton played a strong game, allowing no shots during the entire first half. Portland’s first shot didn’t come until the 51st minute of the game. Portland finished with only two shots on goal.

“It was a great overall defensive effort,” coach Jennifer Rockwood said. “Portland’s a very talented team, and they like to move the ball. We just asked the girls to make them uncomfortable by pressing them as much as we could, and our commitment to winning 50/50 balls was big-time as well.”

Hatch first scored in the fifth minute off a pass from Nikki Hernandes that barely slipped by the keeper. Hatch added her second goal with a beautiful 20-yard left-footed shot in the 14th minute. Her final goal came in the 83rd minute, when Rachel Bingham beat a Portland defender down the left side and found Hatch open in the box. Hatch beat the keeper and slotted the ball on the left side of the keeper.

“Our team has been working hard at practice and has been getting to know each other better,” Hatch said. “I wouldn’t have scored any goals without my teammates.”

BYU finished the night with 22 shots, 11 on goal and 11 corner kicks. The Cougars had the chance to score even more as they put constant pressure on the Pilots’ defense and keeper.

Up next for the Cougars is Gonzaga. They meet on Saturday night at South Field. The Cougars are now 8-3-2.

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