In a battle between the second and third place teams in the Orange Empire Conference, Orange Coast College fell 15-6 at home on Wednesday to second place Golden West College.
With only one week left in their conference schedule, the Pirates now fall to 11-10 with a 2-2 conference record.
“We certainly had moments in the game where we were competitive but we didn't put four quarters together so there is a lot of room for improvement,” OCC head coach Dan Matulis said.
Coast went down 2-0 early after back-to-back goals from sophomore Rustler attacker Stan De Mey. The Pirates would fight back in the first quarter, as goals from Pirates sophomore center Ethan Pranajaya and freshman attacker Mason Parker tied the game up at 2. With two minutes left in the quarter, Coast sophomore goalie Benjamin Matz could not stop the Rustler attack, and the Pirates would give up two quick goals to end the quarter trailing 4-2.
Golden West carried the momentum from the final two minutes into the second quarter, shutting out the Pirates in a 6-0 run. Sophomore Rustler goalie Garrett Henderson kept the Pirates offense in check in the quarter with four of his 10 total saves.
“He’s a good goalie,” Matulis said. “He plays in their system well, and they do a great job of shot blocking which helps him a lot.”
Trailing 8-2, OCC was unable to muster a comeback in the second half. Pranajaya would break a 14 minute scoring drought with five minutes left in the third quarter, and led all Pirates in scoring in the game with two goals. The Rustlers responded with a strong 5-0 run to extend their dominating lead before freshman Pirate attacker Jacob Muller scored the team’s fourth goal with six seconds left in the quarter.
The Pirates will finish their conference schedule next week at home against last place Fullerton College. The matchup will be the final home game in the careers of several Pirate athletes.
“We have some second and third years that have had fantastic careers here and they want to close it out right,” Matulis said.