BURBANK -- Last week, the Bellarmine-Jefferson High football team scored 65 points in a season-opening victory over Monroe.
Turns out the Guards could have used some of that output in a rollover plan for this week. Bell-Jeff lost to Brentwood, 30-8, at Memorial Stadium on the campus of Burroughs High Saturday night.
Before the game, Guards’ coach David Machuca explained that he wanted his team to play bigger schools. After the game, he understood how much work needs to be done.
“They’re in a higher league than we are, and that’s where we’re trying to get,” Machuca said. “Our schedule is tougher so we can get ready for league. We just ran into a good team tonight.”
The Guards’ best opportunity to get into the game came mid-way through the third quarter. Down, 16-0, at halftime, Bell-Jeff took the opening kick of the second half and put together an 11-play drive, only to fumble the ball away at the Eagles’ 19-yard line.
“That was the game,” Machuca said. “It was crucial. I think we were going to go in and score. That fumble set the tone for the rest of the night.”
Brentwood scored two touchdowns in the third to ice the game. Bell-Jeff’s only touchdown came after quarterback Johnathan Porter hooked up with tight end Andrew Belsito for a four-yard touchdown pass.
“I saw the ball and caught it,” Belsito of the catch in triple coverage. “I wasn’t even paying attention (to the defense).”
Belsito also starts at defensive end. The senior held himself accountable for the team’s defensive miscues.
“I take responsibility on the outside,” he said. “I didn’t have it contained. As a defensive end I have to have the outside contained. A lot of their yards came from my side.”
The game was a slow affair early on. Brentwood took a 3-0 lead into the second quarter before adding a pair of touchdowns for the 16-0 halftime lead. Bell-Jeff’s Josh Martinez rushed 15 times for 64 yards, and Porter finished with 76 yards throwing and the lone score.
Brentwood’s Jared Ashkar rushed five times for 53 yards and two touchdowns. Quarterback Connor Boggs ran the ball 9 times for 74 yards and a touchdown. He also was 7 for 17 for 153 yards and a score. Garrett Swanky caught two balls for 93 yards and a trip to the end zone.
“We learned we’ve got to get stronger in the trenches and I found out we’ve got to learn how to tackle before Bishop Montgomery next Friday night,” Machuca said. “We just weren’t aggressive. We weren’t aggressive on the offense or on the defense.”