Rarely will a coach consider a loss a victory, but for Harrisburg High School girls' soccer coach Rick Daugherty, a 3-0 loss to Marion Wednesday was a big confidence booster for his ballclub.
"Marion, you could say, is the team in the area." Daugherty said. "They've shut out some very good programs in Missouri like Cape Vincent, Notre Dame and beat Sikeston. They got a goal 20:00 into the game, but for 50 of the 80 minutes, we played right there with them."
Daugherty added that Harrisburg had their own opportunities, albeit just a few, but that from a respect standpoint, they did get that from Marion.
"We have their respect, I know that much. Everyone played well, we just didn't get any to go in the net. We hung around with a very good team for as young as we are."
Marion had 14 shots in the first half but didn't cash in until the 23rd minute when Emily Dickman scored an unassisted goal.
Rose Crabtree put in a shot with an assist from Dickman seven minutes later and Dickman booted in another goal late in the first half to increase the lead to 3-0 at the break.
Seven different players had shots on goal in the second half —cluding three by McKayla McGee and not including Alia Abu-Douleh, who had four shots in the first half — but none went in for the Lady Wildcats after the break.
Jordan Stewart and Taylor McDaniel each had a shot on goal for the Bulldogs.
Harrisburg will travel to Cape Central, Missouri on Thursday.