HILMAR — "Mantê-lo no quadro."
Hilmar High girls soccer coach Louie Bettencourt shouted that saying to midfielder Haylee Bettencourt, as her free kick struck the left side of the net, reminding her in Portuguese to keep it on target.
The Yellowjackets’ adjustments were too much for the Patterson Tigers to handle in their 4-2 victory on Thursday afternoon at Joe Mattos Field, evening the season series at 1-1.
Victoria Whitford delivered on the field, with her two assists leading the way for Hilmar to facilitate the execution of the team’s offense. Sisters Alyssa and Morgan McFaddin both scored a goal apiece, not to mention assists from Morgan and Monica Pire.
The Yellowjackets found themselves relaxing a bit by the end of the first half.
Little did they know that the Tigers came out looking to steal this one in the second half with goals by Yosselin Alvardo and Shantel Perez, tying the game at 2-2.
But in the end, it was too much Bettencourt. Her two free kicks in the second half resulted in goals, with both of the scores helping put Patterson away. She also ended the day with an assist.
Hilmar had 14 shots and eight saves from Riley Fielder, while Patterson finished with 12 shots and seven saves.
“We needed to expand the field,” said Coach Bettencourt. “There’s a lot of grass out there. We should always be kicking the ball, making those passes. An assist is just as good as a goal. We lost a little focus after we scored, but we just needed to visualize this as a zero-zero game.”
After this victory, Hilmar (4-1-3) sits in third place of the Western Athletic Conference with a handful of games left in the season. Next up is Tuesday’s game against Livingston, a team whom the Yellowjackets tied twice so far.
When asked what he said to Haylee Bettencourt before the free kick, Coach Bettencourt said, “Keep it in frame, and Haylee understands that. She understands competition. We just need to think about one word for the rest of the season: intensity.”