The North Coast Section has ruled that Kahlil McKenzie is ineligible to play football for the entire season after transferring to Clayton Valley Charter from De La Salle.

The son of Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie, Kahlil is considered one of the top defensive line prospects in the country and is committed to Tennessee.

Clayton Valley Charter opened its season Saturday night with a 55-7 win against Carson City (Nevada) at the Honor Bowl at Del Oro High in Loomis.

Reggie McKenzie told this newspaper they are appealing the ruling, with that process beginning Monday.

The McKenzie family issued a statement Saturday, saying, "Kahlil will be in attendance at Clayton Valley Charter's opening game and will continue to support his teammates and coaches throughout his senior season.

"Like any family, we have always made decisions based on what's in the best interest of our children, according to our Christian values. The fact that a system would deny any child of his or her senior year, in any activity for which that student has a God-given passion, is highly disheartening."

In an email, NCS commissioner Gil Lemmon said the section had no public comment on its decision and was referring all questions to Clayton Valley and the McKenzie family. When reached by phone on Friday, and again Saturday, Clayton Valley coach Tim Murphy said the family had asked him not to comment.

Kahlil McKenzie posted to Twitter on Saturday afternoon. "'The moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends toward justice'#FreeKahlil #FreeTheTransfers gonna stay positive this whole time" he wrote.


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Per CIF rules, transfer student-athletes are subject to a "sit-out period" unless they moved or meet certain hardship criteria. But students can be ruled ineligible for the entire year if their transfer was deemed athletically motivated.

Clayton Valley's varsity football team has five other transfers, including McKenzie's sophomore brother Jalen. Their eligibility could not be confirmed.

In Clayton Valley's win over Carson City, Miles Harrison had 217 yards and three touchdowns on just 14 carries.

James Logan 28, Tennyson 14: Quarterback Christian Leota passed for 225 of his 283 yards and all three of his touchdowns in the second half, as visiting James Logan came back to beat Tennyson.

Tennyson took a 14-0 lead into halftime as Tavite Lopeti scored on a 29-yard touchdown run in the first quarter and Jacob Watson caught a 41-yard touchdown pass from Jhayvee Daily late in the second quarter.

But James Logan responded immediately after halftime, moving the opening drive of the half 69 yards in eight plays. The drive was capped when Leota hit Keonte Taylor in stride for a 30-yard touchdown.

Leota connected with Ahmari Davis for a 48-yard touchdown on Logan's next drive, then the Colts took the lead for the first time with 9:14 remaining on a 93-yard touchdown from Leota to Taylor. A 1-yard run by Izaiah Paopao with 3:46 to go was the final score of the game.

-- Phil Jensen

St. Mary's 39, Moreau Catholic 6: Tamarick Pierce rushed for four touchdowns, including a 42-yard scoring run on his first touch of the afternoon, to help lead the host Panthers past the Mariners.

Moreau Catholic took a 6-0 lead in the first quarter, as Gustavo Borrayo returned a St. Mary's fumble 92 yards for a touchdown. But the Mariners offense sputtered without running back Jason Hinton, managing just 76 total yards. Hinton, who had 2,051 rushing yards last season, is still recovering from offseason knee surgery.

-- James Nelson, correspondent

Mt. Eden 55, Mt. Diablo 36: The host Monarchs scored the first three touchdowns to build an early cushion in this error- and penalty-filled opener for both teams.

Giovanni Remmen threw five touchdown passes for Mt. Eden, four of them to Dominic Williams, the longest for 90 yards. Isaiah Fihaki had the other touchdown reception, a 20-yarder late in the first half. Tookey Stevenson added two runs for touchdowns.

Defensively, Mt. Eden also intercepted four passes, including one run back for another score.

-- Mike McGreehan, correspondent

Novato 31, Dougherty Valley 8: The Hornets, after falling behind 8-7 in the second quarter, scored 24 unanswered points to pull away from Dougherty Valley. Novato forced six Wildcat turnovers.

Dougherty Valley's only score came on a 2-yard touchdown run by Michael Pangelinan. A 42-yard kickoff return and Sam Tarasow's 34-yard run helped set up the score.

-- Marin Independent Journal

Berean Christian 47, Emery 8: Sophomore wideout Isaiah Hodgins had six receptions for 145 yards and two touchdowns as the host Eagles trounced the Spartans.

The Eagles' Nicholas Ramos had 120 yards rushing and two touchdowns.

-- Matt Schwab

Sutter 49, El Cerrito 14: Gauchos quarterback Keith Thomas threw for 179 yards and rushed for another 69, but the defending NCS Division III champions were overwhelmed by Sutter at De Anza.

El Cerrito fell behind 21-0 in the second quarter, but Calvin Nunley hauled in touchdown passes of 59 and 27 yards from Thomas as the Gauchos pulled to within 28-14 with 2:04 left in the third quarter. But Sutter, a top Northern Section team, quickly responded with a 1-yard scoring run by Alex Lopez on its next possession.

-- Stephanie Hammon

American 18, Arroyo 14: Junior Trevon Jones' 2-yard touchdown run with 5:16 remaining in the fourth quarter proved to be the winning score as the Eagles outlasted the Dons at Tak Fudenna Stadium.

Jones had 172 yards rushing and two second-half touchdowns as American bounced back from a 14-6 halftime deficit.

American's defense forced a three-and-out from Arroyo after Jones' score, and the Eagles were able to run the clock out for the victory. The Dons were held to just 95 yards for the game.

-- Tony Gonsalez, correspondent