The Pirates' soccer team played well enough to win on Friday night. They had 24 shots against visiting Moorpark at the Sportsplex, keeping up the pressure with 11 on goal. Unfortunately, only one found the back of the net in Ventura's 2-1 loss to the Raiders, who had just two shots in the entire game. Jasmin Ambriz scored the Pirates' lone goal in the third minute of the game, assisted by Jacqueline Rivera. Moorpark netted scores in the fifth and 58th minutes of the contest.
The Pirates (5-4-2, 0-2), who have had trouble finding the net this season, got off to a strong start. Sammy Zanini had a 40-yard free kick punched over the crossbar in the opening minute of play and Ambriz put VC ahead 1-0 two minutes later. Ventura conceded the equalizer two minutes after that, however, and the teams battled to a 1-1 tie at halftime.
Ventura certainly had its chances to pull ahead in the opening 45 minutes. In the 27th minute Jacky Espinosa had a direct kick head on from 27 yards out, only to see it slide wide left. Aleesa Ramirez attacked the right side, hitting a pass across the front of the net that came up empty in the 32nd minute, and Ambriz had almost an identical look a minute later. Stephany Ramirez went for the back post from the left side in the 35th minute, just grazing the outside of the post, and Ambriz had another shot from 17 yards out soon therafter that also sailed past the outside of the goal.
Early in the second half, Moorpark had their second shot of the game, one from 20 yards out on the right side that sailed just inside the top near corner of the goal for the 2-1 Raider advantage.
Ventura kept up the pressure with many more scoring opportunities, but they could never get the final kick into the goal. Zanini moved into the midfield and found herself on the right side of the VC attack on numerous occasions, and Ambriz produced a pair of chances late, a shot in the 84th minute, and a cross that was settled by Yareli Vasquez, then shot wide in the 88th. Ventura fell by the final 2-1 margin.
The Pirates return to the pitch on Tuesday Oct. 8 hosting Allan Hancock College. Kickoff is slated for 6:30 pm at the Sportsplex.