COSTA MESA -- The Orange Coast College football team struggled in the trenches on Saturday night as visiting El Camino College notched 12 sacks on its way to a 42-24 win over the host Pirates at Dick Tucker Field.
In all, the Warriors' defense harassed the Pirates all night with 22 total tackles for loss that totaled 103 yards in the wrong direction. Eight different ECC players had at least one full sack, including Christion Johnson with two and Justin Martz, Quinn Perry and Sioeli Pulu with 1.5 each.
Despite a relentless Warrior defense, the Pirates still managed to find success with the ball, thanks to a collection of mis-directed plays that succeeded in finding open spaces for the OCC playmakers.
Following a botched handoff attempt by the Warriors, the Pirates used a fake quarterback run as quarterback Pete Mitchell stepped back and found a cutting Dylan Laurent up the middle for a 31-yard touchdown pass, putting OCC up 7-0.
It didn't take long for the Warriors to respond as quarterback Aaron Thomas hit Trevon Clark deep for a 67-yard touchdown pass, evening the score at 7.
It stayed that way for the remainder of the quarter OCC defensive back Michael Archer picked off a Thomas pass on the second play of the second quarter, returning the pick all the way to the Warriors' 1-yard line. Two plays later, quarterback Nathan West snuck into the end zone to put OCC up, 14-7.
Once again, the big play potential of the Warriors reared its ugly head on the next ECC possession as backup QB Grant Ferrauilo hooked up with Trevon Clark on a 51-yard TD strike, tying the score at 14.
Again, Coast responded with a solid drive into ECC territory, but a 32-yard field goal attempt clanked off the left upright and two possessions later, Clark too a backwards pass from Ferrauilo and fired a strike to a wide-open Kameron Spencer for a 20-yard TD, putting El Camino ahead, 21-14.
On OCC's next possession a Mitchell pass banked off the body of an OCC receiver and into the hands of defensive back Isaiah Lemos, who returned the pick 29 yards for a Warriors' touchdown, putting ECC up, 28-14 just before the end of the first half.
But the Pirates came out hitting for the third quarter as Ferrauilo was stripped of the ball by the OCC defense, putting the Pirates at the ECC 22-yard line, where, four plays later, Shaun-Javier Rhodes slammed into the end zone from 2-yards out, cutting the deficit to 28-21.
However, ECC again bounced back and quickly answered with a touchdown of its own as Ferrauilo connected with Kishawn Berry for a 41-yard touchdown to push the Warriors' lead back to 14 at 35-21.
After a Max Casper 41-yard field goal trimmed the deficit to 35-24, Coast got a stop on defense and marched all the way down to the ECC 15-yard line, but a key fourth-down stop by the Warriors' defense stopped OCC's momentum cold.
ECC capped off the scoring with a 26-yard TD strike from Ferrauilo to Gabriel Bermudez with just under a minute left in the third quarter, making it 42-24.
Mitchell and West combined for 229 passing yards and a touchdown on 18-of-40 passing, while Ferrauilo threw for 168 yards and three TDs for the Warriors.
Clark led the WRs for El Camino with four catches for 134 receiving yards and two TDs, while Laurent and Demondray Purnell each had four catches for a combined 97 yards for OCC.
Coast will return to action on Saturday night at Bakersfield College, beginning at 6 p.m. OCC's next home game will be on Saturday, Oct. 13 against rival Golden West, also at 6 p.m.