COSTA MESA -- The Orange Coast College football team battled rival Golden West for four hard-fought quarters, but in the end, the Rustlers made fewer mistakes and came up with more big plays en route to a 24-10 Victory Bell-preserving win on Saturday night at Dick Tucker Field.
With no sacks allowed and no turnovers committed, Golden West (3-3, 1-0 in National Conference, Southern Division), managed a solid game plan against the Pirates (1-5, 0-1), who stubbed their own toes with three sacks, six fumbles (three lost) and an interception.
It was a matchup that featured the passing game of the Rustlers vs. the ground attack of the Pirates and while both teams managed to run each of these game plans well, GWC picked up the big plays that resulted in points.
Rustler quarterback Beau Kalbacher threw for 207 yards and two touchdowns, including a 35-yard TD strike to Jonathan Earl and a 21-yard TD pass to Jeremiah Wright.
OCC picked up 175 rushing yards and was led on the ground by Dadrian Ellis, who picked up 77 yards on 11 carries. Quarterback Pete Mitchell threw for 91 yards and rushed for 51 yards, including a 6-yard touchdown scramble early in the game that put OCC up 7-0.
But Golden West scored the next 24 points, including a costly fumble recovery in the OCC end zone by GWC's V.J. Malo that put the Rustlers up, 17-7.
Max Cooper tacked on a last-second 26-yard field goal for the Pirates, but it was too little, too late as the Rustlers walked off the field with the Victory Bell in their possession for the eighth time in nine seasons.
Coast will have a shortened week to prepare for its next matchup as the Pirates will play at Mission Viejo HS to take on Saddleback on Friday night, beginning at 6 p.m.