The Yankton boys’ soccer team wasn’t exactly disappointed Thursday night.
Even after a 2-1 loss.
The narrow setback to O’Gorman was the perfect example of a moral victory, according to Yankton’s coach.
“This was the best soccer they’ve played,” head coach Dave Dannenbring said after the game at Crane-Youngworth Field.
“One of seniors, Kyler Lillie, even said after the game that this is as proud as he’s been of his team.”
Even though they came up just short, the Bucks (2-2-1) executed exactly what they wanted, according to Dannenbring — they pressed, they disrupted passes and they played well in the middle of the field.
“We had great ball movement,” the coach said. “This was a real team effort, because we had to bring in different guys to keep everyone fresh.”
Unlike their season opener when a late goal gave the Bucks a tie instead of a loss, Yankton couldn’t find the back of the net in a fast-paced final few minutes Thursday.
O’Gorman got on the scoreboard first with a Riley Aarbo penalty kick at the 26:01 mark of the first half.
From the next 57 minutes, though, the Bucks kept themselves in the game by neutralizing any looks by the Knights.
The score remained 1-0 until the 9:47 mark of the scond half, when O’Gorman’s Wesley Zimprich found the back of the net on a one-on-one scenario with the Yankton defense.
That 2-0 cushion didn’t last long, however.
Yankton senior Nick Gregorie scored a goal off a corner kick with 9:07 remaining, but the Bucks couldn’t find the equalizer.
Still, they saw plenty of positives, according to Dannenbring.
“They’re learning how to communicate together and our captains have really stepped it up,” he said.
The Bucks are next in action next Tuesday when they host Brandon Valley at 6 p.m. at Crane-Youngworth Field.
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