Right place, right time.
The Class 3A No. 12 Bulldogs capitalized on chaos inside the penalty box, scoring three times on second chance opportunities to beat North Scott 3-0 Thursday at TouVelle Stadium.
The win guarantees Bettendorf finishes no worse than second in the Mississippi Athletic Conference and keeps the chance of a title share alive as the Bulldogs remain a game back of Pleasant Valley.
"We've just got to take advantage of the chances we get, and if we get the chance to put it in we've got to find a way to put it in the back of the net," senior Tyler Wellman said. "You've got to be in the right place at the right time and take advantage of it, keep working the ball around, look for the rebounds and always be there for the rebounds and put the ball in the back of the net."
Wellman scored the game's first goal, burying a pass from Reed Shea in the 35th minute.
After North Scott opened up the second half with some controlled possession, Bettendorf doubled its lead on a weird play. A shot from outside the 18 that looked destined to sail over the goal instead curled and stayed inbounds, landing on the foot of Ian Silva.
Silva found George Elias for the goal in the 57th minute.
Oskar Skogman capped the scoring in the 79th minute, firing a shot that was stopped by North Scott keeper Colin Wiersema before the ball rebounded back out to Skogman for the goal.
"Hustle goals, and rightfully so, they earned them," North Scott head coach Troy Bendickson said. "We've got to clear them out, but at the same time we've got to learn from the fact that they're relentless and we've got to be relentless."
Bettendorf's back line continues to be a strength, helping post the team's seventh shutout of the season. Every Bulldog win this year has come with a clean sheet.
The Bulldogs (7-2, 7-1), who drew a No. 2 seed in their substate pairing Thursday, have allowed just four goals this year and feel they've learned from their only losses of the season, a 3-0 loss to Pleasant Valley and a 1-0 defeat to Iowa City High.
"We're really holding it down, we're not playing around," junior Sam Dunn said. "You can see that we're not possessing it in the back very much, it's all in the midfield and over."
Like Bettendorf, North Scott (8-4, 5-3) earned the second seed in its substate and will continue to be tested entering the postseason, with games against Prairie, Iowa City Regina and Davenport Central to close out the season.
There are still things to work on.
"Teams like this, they're technical at every spot and with depth," Bendickson said. "I like who we are, I like our kids, I like where we're going but we can see where we need to go."