El Cerrito High football star Keith Benjamin did what he had done all night in the showdown against Bellarmine College Prep.
He caught a pass from his twin brother Keilan and fought for extra yards. But this time the ball popped loose, the Bells' Kyle Mac- Auley recovered, and the visiting Bells ran out the clock to secure a wild 28-25 win over the Gauchos on Saturday night at De Anza High.
The early season showdown displayed a contrast in styles, with Bellarmine (1-0) running a double-wing-T and the Gauchos spreading the ball around using the pistol offense. Keilan Benjamin passed for 259 yards, ran for two touchdowns and passed for another.
His 3-yard touchdown completion to Keith Benjamin at the end the third quarter cut the deficit to 28-25.
Bellarmine quarterback K.J. Carta-Samuels, who is headed to Vanderbilt, ran for 111 yards on 16 carries and scored three touchdowns. The Bells ran for 273 yards, and El Cerrito (1-1) traveled mostly by air with its dynamic skill-position players. El Cerrito played without standout Jalen Harvey, a Cal commit serving a one-game suspension after being ejected in the team's season-opening 34-14 win over Sutter.
The Bells' overpowering offensive line and Carta-Samuels' efficiency allowed Bellarmine to run out the clock after recovering Benjamin's fumble with 4:17 left.
El Cerrito turned two Bellarmine fumbles into touchdowns. After the Bells marched in for a score on their first possession, the Gauchos pulled to within 7-6 when Derik Calhoun returned a fumble 15 yards for a score after Jawian Harrison jarred the ball loose with a mighty hit on ball-carrier Anthony Guttadauro.
El Cerrito led 12-7 on Keilan Benjamin's 6-yard run, capping an electric drive in which Benjamin completed four passes for 68 yards and ran 18 yards beating the blitz.
Alameda 20, Redwood-Larkspur 13: The Hornets (2-0) scored two touchdowns in the second half and limited the host Giants (0-2) to 15 yards rushing in the second half in a nonleague victory.
After a 15-yard touchdown run from Trevor Greenley, Alameda scored again when Elijah Hernandez dove in from the 1-yard line to cap a seven-play drive, which was aided by a 15-yard Redwood penalty.
Redwood quarterback Aaron Dorfler threw two touchdown passes in the first half but an injury to running back Khari Haynes hampered the Giants (0-2), as they were shut out in the second half.
-- John Swartz, Marin Independent Journal
Middletown 21, Salesian 14: Brad Bologna recovered a fumbled snap at the Mustangs' 24-yard line with 11 seconds left in the fourth quarter to seal the victory for Middletown (1-0). The Pride (1-1) had driven from its own 39 with 40 seconds left after the Mustangs had scored on a 1-yard run by Brad Beckwith to take the lead.
Middletown scored first when Anthony Guzman recovered a Jordan Cole fumble and returned it 53 yards for a score in the first quarter.
That was the first of several huge plays for Guzman, who also intercepted two passes and had six receptions for 110 yards -- including a 32-yard catch that set up the winning score.
With the Mustangs leading 13-0, the Pride answered on a 2-yard touchdown run by DeAngelo Hernandez, who rushed for 161 yards on 24 carries.
Salesian took the lead in the fourth quarter as Dominic Parella scored on a 1-yard sneak and Hernandez ran in the two-point conversion for a 14-13 lead.
-- Damin Esper, correspondent
Monte Vista d. Carondelet: Hailey Lindberg had nine kills and teammate Lo Utchen had seven to lead the Mustangs past the Cougars 25-22, 25-21 in the Gold Division final of the Deer Valley Tournament.
The turning point came in the first game, as a block by the Mustangs' Sarah Thompson gave her team a 24-22 lead.
In the semifinals, the Mustangs (7-0) beat Division I power Palo Alto and Carondelet (5-1) topped NCS Division III champ and state runner-up Campolindo.
-- Matt Smith, correspondent