Hatch scores 4 goals as Highland routs Westview

Hatch scores 4 goals as Highland routs Westview


Hatch scores 4 goals as Highland routs Westview


It became clear early on Friday that while Gilbert Highland and Avondale Westview were playing a girls soccer match, what was going on down on the field couldn’t be called much of a contest.

Highland dominated host Westview from the outset, scoring four goals in each half to take an 8-0 victory in the Division I match.

“We came out and played 80 minutes hard, so you got to be pleased with that,” Highland coach John Berzins said. “Everybody, top to bottom, came in and worked hard. We executed exactly what we talked about doing and the end result was we got the shutout, so good stuff.”

Highland (2-0) simply outmatched Westview (1-1) in every facet of the game: its passes were crisper, its crosses sharper, its set plays more effective. The final margin would’ve been even wider if not for some near-misses and a few nice saves by the Westview goalkeeper.

Captain and senior forward Ashley Hatch scored four goals for Highland. Senior midfielder Paige Morris, junior midfielder Bre McCarter, senior forward Brena Jarvis and senior forward Leslie Kelly contributed one each.

“We just had our game plan: control the ball in the middle, get it to the outside, cross it in and finish,” Hatch said. “I had a few good crosses from my teammates and I finished those, and on set pieces I got my head on it and got a few shots on those. So a little bit of everything.”

Highland held such a hefty advantage in time of possession, one would’ve thought the midfield stripe was an out-of-bounds marker. Westview’s fans even let out a relieved cheer any time their team managed to cross into Highland territory.

Highland went into halftime up 4-0 and added three more goals in the first 10 minutes of the second half. Soon after, Berzins pulled most of his starters and played his second string, but it made little difference.

After defeating Mesa Desert Ridge 6-0 on Tuesday, Highland has now outscored its two opponents 14-0 to open the season.

“It’s a great start but it’s definitely early in the year,” Berzins said. “We got a lot of stuff to work on to make sure we’re playing late into the postseason, but I like the steps we’re taking to make sure we’re focused to get there.”

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