Recap: Ventura Football dominates Moorpark in first matchup of the season


Ventura running back Derek West jumps through the Moorpark defense, attempting for a first down during the Citrus Cup game on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021, in Moorpark, CA. Photo credit: Ryan Bough

By Jack Newman

On Saturday, Sept. 3, Moorpark College kicked off their 2022 football season with a road matchup against Ventura College.

Last year, Moorpark College Raiders ended the season with a finishing record of 4-6. While they did go 3-2 in conference games, it wasn’t enough to land them a spot in the playoffs.

The start of the new year began with the Ventura College Pirates receiving the kickoff from Moorpark placekicker Daniel Burke. While the Pirates had a promising first drive that saw them on Moorpark’s goal line, they were unable to capitalize on this opportunity and failed to covert on a 4th down running attempt.

With Moorpark’s first drive starting on their own 1-yard line, getting to the other side of the field proved to be a difficult task for them. After a couple of pass attempts, the Raiders were forced to punt from their own 5-yard line. This proved to be a common theme for the Raiders throughout the game, as overall the team seemed unable to get any offensive momentum going.

With not a lot of time left on the clock in the first quarter, Ventura kicker Rafael Vargas was able to drill a 51-yard field goal through the upright, making this the first score of the game and putting Ventura College up 3-0.

The first touchdown of the game came near the end of the first quarter, when Ventura quarterback Braden Siri was able to connect with Jesse Valenzuela for a 31-yard score.

By the time the first half was complete, Ventura commanded a comfortable 33-0 lead over Moorpark, and continued to maintain that lead during the second half of the game.

The first drive of the third quarter started off promising for Moorpark. With some successful passing plays from quarterback Macloud Crowton, the Raiders were able to get to Ventura’s 29-yard line. However, this momentum quickly came to a halt when a fourth-and-4 passing attempt failed, giving Ventura the ball back.

Moorpark was unable to get to Ventura’s side of the field for the rest of the game as their offense continuously struggled against Ventura defense.

The game ended with a final score of 49-0, giving the Ventura Pirates their first victory of the new season.

The Moorpark Raiders will look to bounce back during their home opener against Santa Ana College this Saturday, Sept. 10 at 6 p.m.