HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA – The Golden West College Rustlers (3-4, 1-1) fell to the No. 3 Riverside City College Tigers (6-1, 2-0) at home on Saturday, 24-6.
The Rustlers offense simply couldn't stay on the field, losing both the time of possession and turnover battles, to a stingy Tiger defense.
On the game's opening drive, Tigers' quarterback, Stone Smartt, connected with Jammal Houston for a 33-yard touchdown pass to take an early 7-0 lead.
Later in the opening quarter, Golden West's Beau Kalbacher, who finished the day 13-of-24 for 134 yards and an interception, found wideout Ben Ratzlaff downfield for a 68-yard strike, giving the Rustlers a red zone opportunity. However, on the following play, Juwain Roper coughed up the football and Riverside's Vic Viramontes was able to scoop it up for a 25-yard return to their own 37 yard-line.
Early in the second quarter, the Tigers would again capitalize on a Golden West turnover, this time an errant pass from Kalbacher was picked off and returned 47 yards by Riverside's Dayshawn Neal. Riverside would take advantage of great field position, adding three points on a John Garibay 31-yard field goal to take a 10-0 lead at the half.
The offensive woes continued for Golden West in the second half, while Riverside continued to sustain long drives with their quick tempo offense. Smartt would add to the Tiger lead late in the third quarter, diving into the end zone after a 10-yard scramble. Malik Walker added a one-yard touchdown run midway through the fourth quarter, putting Riverside ahead 24-0.
Golden West Football will take on Saddleback College in their home finale next Saturday, October 27 at 1:00 pm.
(Wes McCurtis, Statistician | firstname.lastname@example.org)