Bendigo Pioneers girls under-18 coach Cherie O'Neill is confident her side will get better as the season progresses.
The Pioneers suffered their third-straight loss on Sunday - a 7.8 (50) to 1.1 (7) defeat at the hands of Calder Cannons at Epsom-Huntly Recreation Reserve.
"Our intensity at the footy week-to-week has been great, but unfortunately we can't convert it on the scoreboard,'' O'Neill said.
"Calder is a very good side and the Western Jets were, too. Those sides are very clean and strong overhead.
"We're starting to work better as a team and we're getting better at trusting our team-mate.
"Our fundamentals probably let us down a bit today."
The Cannons laid the foundation for the win with a 2.4 to no score opening quarter.
The Pioneers were still scoreless at half-time, but responded strongly in the third term.
The Cannons only won the third term by two points, with the Pioneers kicking their only goal of the game through Dakota Villiva.
"I thought our backline held up really well,'' O'Neill said.
"Jemma Finning, Tara Slender and Tara Hopkins were great for us in the backline.
"Our midfield tried all day. Hannah Stewart and Annabel Strahan were good for us."
Strahan and Rachael Stubbings had the most possessions for the Pioneers with 16 each.
Finning and Elizabeth Snell had 15 touches each, while Villiva chipped in with 12.
O'Neill said the first-year players were still coming to terms with the speed of NAB League football.
"At training we're working on those fundamentals and the girls train really well,'' O'Neill said.
"The pace on game day is probably finding us out a bit. There's much more intensity.
"We're playing a lot of our young girls that we're rotating through and that's probably showing a bit.
"On the whole, we're doing the right thing."
Sunday's game was the first NAB League game played under coronavirus restrictions.
Pioneers talent manager Steve Sharp said the club had introduced measures to help protect players, staff and supporters.
The same measures will be put in place for the under-18 boys competition, which starts next weekend.
"It will only be players, staff and immeadiate family at boys and girls games,'' Bendigo Pioneers talent manager Steve Sharp said.
"No-one outside of the players and staff will be allowed in the rooms. No-one can come out to the huddles at quarter time and three quarter-time.
"At this stage the games will go ahead, but we know things could change. We're not sure what's going to happen going forward."
The Pioneers under-16 boys and under-18 boys played trial games against the Murray Bushrangers at Epsom-Huntly Recreation Reserve on Friday night.
In testing, windy conditions, both matches went down to the wire.
"They were both very good games and we got out of them what we wanted,'' Sharp said.
"They were close games. We won by two or four points in the under-18 match and the under-16 game was close as well.
"We're really happy with the way we're heading. The kids are still really raw, but that's okay.
"We've had some kids really stand up in the practice games, which is pleasing."
The under-18 boys round one game is aagainst the Geelong Falcons at GMHBA Stadium on March 21.
Their first game in Bendigo is not until April 4 at the QEO against the Gippsland Power.