EL SOBRANTE -- Senior Adarius Pickett rushed for two touchdowns and caught two touchdowns Saturday night as the El Cerrito High football team advanced to the North Coast Section Division III semifinals with a 45-2 win over Novato at De Anza High.

Third-seeded El Cerrito (10-2) will now face Campolindo next Friday at 7 p.m. after the second-seeded Cougars dispatched Acalanes, 38-14 Friday.

On Saturday, the all-around talent of Pickett, bound for UCLA next fall, was on full display as the speedster scored on a short run in the first quarter, added two TD passes from Keilan Benjamin and then scooted 22 yards for his final score early in the fourth quarter.

Pickett finished with 86 yards rushing on 11 carries and had 133 yards receiving on four catches. Senior Keilan Benjamin ended the contest with 15 of 24 for 267 yards.

Twin Keith Benjamin added a 43-yard fumble return for a score and Tim Smith booted a 28-yard field goal midway through the third quarter. Freshman Kealeon Dyer-Hogan delighted the El Cerrito sideline for bolting 33 yards for a touchdown for the Gauchos' final score.

The only points for Novato (5-7) came on a safety when punter Marquis Pippins had his punt blocked and recovered in the end zone for a swarm of players.

Division III Quarterfinals El Cerrito 45, Novato 2

Novato          0          2          0          0--          2

El Cerrito          7          14          10          14--          45

EC -- Pickett 1 run (Smith kick)

N -- Safety, Pippins blocked punt recovered in end zone

EC -- Keith Benjamin 43 fumble return (Smith kick)

EC -- Pickett 16 pass from Keilan Benjamin (Smith kick)

EC -- Smith 28 FG

EC -- Pickett 65 pass from Keilan Benjamin (Smith kick)

EC -- Pickett 22 run (Smith kick)

EC -- Dyer-Hogan 33 run (Smith kick)

Rushing: N -- Barkus 20-44, Dreher 6-5, Roberts 1-2, Polera 1-0, Carr 1-(-2), Randel 1-(-6). Totals 30-45. EC -- Pickett 10-86, Keilan Benjamin 12-39, Dyer-Hogan 2-39, Keith Benjamin 2-17, Smith 1-20, Tolliver 1-10, Harvey 1-(-13). Totals 30-197. Passing: N -- Dreher 4-13-1 6, Barkus 1-1-0 (-4). Totals 5-14-1 2. EC -- Keilan Benjamin 15-24-0 267. Receiving: N -- Herrera 1-8, Wegner 1-3, Poels 1-(-1), Dreher 1-(-4), Barkus 1-(-4). 5-2. EC -- Pickett 4-133, Keith Benjamin 4-48, Nunley 1-33, Harvey 3-31, Harrison 1-8, Powe 1-8, Pippins 1-6. 15-267. Fumbles/lost: Novato -- 5/4; El Cerrito -- 2/0. Records: Novato 5-7; El Cerrito 10-2.