The 49ers opened the preseason on the road in Oakland, losing 18-6 to the Raiders.
It was scoreless at the end of the first quarter with the 49ers second-team defense also holding after a J.T. O'Sullivan fumble in the second quarter, stopping the Raiders at the 11-yardline on a 4th and 2 play.
But after a three and out series by Alex Smith and the offense, Johnnie Lee Higgins got the Raiders on the board with a 53-yard punt return for a touchdown. Safety Keith Lewis was there as Higgins caught the punt, but the returner juked Lewis and then beat Andy Lee to the end zone. Kicker Aaron Elling punched in the extra point for the 7-0 lead with 3:26 to go in the first half
The 49ers answered with a 22-yard field goal by Joe Nedney capping off a 10-play, 59-yard scoring drive. Smith guided the scoring drive, completing 4 of 7 of his passes for 43 yards.
The 49ers went into the half trailing the Raiders 7-3 with both scores coming on special teams, but Andrew Walter opened the third quarter for Oakland with a 13-play, 75-yard scoring drive that ate up over eight minutes off the clock. Running back Michael Bush punched it in from 5-yards out for the touchdown. Following a penalty on the extra point attempt, Oakland went for two and got it with a Walter throw to Chaz Schilens to take a 15-3 third quarter lead.
A 72-yard run play by Louis Rankin in the fourth quarter led to a 23-yard field goal by Elling and extended Oakland's lead, 18-3. Credit cornerback Marcus Hudson for chasing down Rankin at the 9 to prevent the touchdown.
The 49ers responded with a 10-play, 37-yard drive and a 38-yard field goal by kicker Ricky Schmitt. The score came at just over eight minutes left in the game and was set up by a 40-yard kickoff return by tight end Delanie Walker.
It narrowed Oakland's lead to 18-6, but it was the final scoring of the night to give the Raiders the Battle of the Bay victory.
49ers rookie wide receiver Josh Morgan startedt in place of wide receiver Bryant Johnson, who was out with a hamstring. Veteran wide receiver Isaac Bruce was also be held out due to a coaching decision. Wide receiver Arnaz Battle started in place of Bruce.
Safety Dashon Goldson started in place of safety Mark Roman, who was held out for precautionary reasons with a hamstring.
Also not playing tonight: G David Baas, S Lewis Baker, WR Ashley Lelie, RB Michael Robinson.
Safety Michael Lewis wore the headset in his helmet for the first half with safety Keith Lewis taking over the headset in the second half. The headsets for defensive players is a new rule for 2008.