Defensive improvement was one of the focal points for the Nebraska City girls’ soccer team going into this year and early returns are suggesting that the Pioneers are meeting their goal.
Coach Kyle Ferguson said a year ago, his team was guilty of chasing the ball and failing to stay with their assignment on defense.
That’s not the case this year.
Although the Pioneers fell in Monday and Tuesday matches to Norris, 4-0, and to Waverly, 6-0, it doesn’t take much work in analyzing the matches to find proof of defensive improvement.
Norris was playing with the wind at their backs throughout the course of the first half on Monday, but held a just a 1-0 lead at the end of the first 40 minutes.
The Pioneers played Waverly to within three goals until late in Tuesday's game.
Waverly, a squad that returns all but one player from a team that lost in a shootout in the district final a year ago, beat the Pioneers 10-0 last year.
Nebraska City was scheduled to return to action at 5 p.m. Thursday night against Conestoga at home before traveling to play at 7 p.m. Monday at Blair.