Ashley Hatch scored BYU’s 17th hat trick and first since 2005 to lead the No. 23 BYU women’s soccer team to a 3-0 win over Portland on Thursday night at South Field.
“I knew I wanted the hat trick so I just kept kicking and finally got it. It was pretty cool,” the sophomore forward Hatch said. “Our team has been working hard at practice and has been getting to know each other better. I wouldn’t have scored any goals without my teammates.”
In the 83rd minute, Rachel Bingham beat a Portland defender down the left side and found Hatch open in the box. Hatch took the pass and beat the diving Portland keeper inside the left post for the hat trick.
BYU (8-3-2, 2-0-0) improved to 5-4-0 all-time against Portland (5-6-2, 2-1-0) and 4-0 since it joined the West Coast Conference, while it extended overall win streak to seven games.
In the first half, Niki Fernandes found a wide-open Hatch who rifled a shot past Portland’s goalie to score her ninth goal of the season to put the Cougars up 1-0 in the fifth minute. Hatch has scored in four consecutive games, the first BYU player to do so since Jennie Marshall in 2010.
“It was a great overall defensive effort. Portland’s a very talented team and they like to move the ball,” head coach Jennifer Rockwood said. “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 wasn’t finished on the evening. Less than 10 minutes after giving BYU the lead she beat the keeper again, this time with her left foot from 20 yards out on a strike that snuck in just under the crossbar. The goal gave Hatch her third multi-goal game of the season.
The three goals from Hatch moved her into a tie with Marshall for 14th on BYU’s career goals list with 17 and was the first hat trick of her career.
The Cougar attack kept Portland’s goalie on her toes with 22 shots, 11 of them on goal, and 11 corner kicks while putting constant pressure on the Pilot defense.
BYU's starting backline of Annie Amos, Taylor Campbell Isom, Sarah Chambers and Avery Calton was stout the entire game allowing just two shots. Subs Rachel Bingham, Ella Johnson and Miranda Bailey contributed to the shutout.
Katherine Snyder picked up the fourth shutout during BYU’s seven-game winning streak, stopping the Pilots only two shots.
The Gonzaga Bulldogs are up next for the Cougars when they come to South Field on Saturday, Oct. 11 at 7 p.m. MDT. The game will be broadcast live on BYUtv and can be heard on BYU Radio Sirius XM channel 143.