Idaho splits weekend soccer games
For the Idaho soccer team, defense has been a focal point of its spring season.
The defense, along with improvement in the weight room, showed over the weekend as the Vandals grabbed their first win of the spring. The Vandals split with a pair of NAIA teams with a victory over Corban and a loss to the 2013 NAIA National Champion Concordia Saturday in Portland, Oregon.
“Corban is a good program, Concordia was the NAIA national champion two years ago,” Idaho coach Derek Pittman said. “They are both very good teams. I thought our team played exceptionally well.”
While Pittman said he was satisfied with the defensive effort the team showed in the last two weeks, the team needs to be more efficient on the offensive end. In the win over Corban, they had a number of chances to extend the lead, but they couldn’t capitalize on them.
The Vandals will try to continue their improvements April 14 when they head to Spokane to take on Spokane Falls Community College.
“Now, we are trying to get the mental side of things and the game and make ourselves better,” Pittman said. “When we face certain challenges, and today we had plenty of challenges to deal with … (we) continue to get better.”
The Vandals outshot Corban 25-5 overall and they could have easily put two or three more goals on the board, Pittman said.
After they grinded out a 1-0 shutout, they needed to prepare for a fresh Concordia team that hadn’t yet played a game that day.
The Vandals gave up a goal in the first few minutes of the game after a defensive lapse to go down 1-0. After this, the defense tightened up, but they weren’t able to get a ball in the net and fell to Concordia.
Pittman said the offensive end of the field will be an emphasis throughout the rest of the spring.
The team has made strides on defense since the end of the fall season, they just need to get the offensive side up to the same level.
“Our defensive organization has been very good,” Pittman said. “We were limiting team’s chances and not giving up as many chances as we did last fall, and so that has been a positive. We just want to keep doing that.”
Joshua Gamez can be reached at email@example.com