Look out for hard-charging Carson. Carson football coach Kevin McCall knew the Colts’ defense needed to step up and shut down Banning star running back Joel Villarreal in the second half if it was going to pull away in Friday night’s Marine League matchup.
Villarreal, who ran wild against Carson (3-4, 2-0) for 131 yards on nine carries in the first half, was held to nine yards on eight carries in the second half as the Colts won 32-20.
The solution seems simple, but it’s not typically easy to do against a running back of Villarreal’s caliber.
“We had to tackle him,” McCall said. “We’ve played against a lot of good running backs and he was no different. He was a really good, hard, tough running back. If you don’t tackle him, he’s going to go.”
Coach John Aponte of Banning (5-2, 1-1) knew Carson would load the box against his offense, and it all came down to execution.
“We have to do a better job of executing,” Aponte said. “The offense didn’t do a good job of sustaining drives and it put our defense in a bad spot. Twenty points is not enough. We just didn’t execute the opportunities we had.”
Meanwhile, Carson freshman quarterback Jaja Bellinger is no longer playing like a freshman. McCall said Bellinger already is garnering interest from colleges, and that he’s going to be great, but that right now he needs him to be solid and consistent. Bellinger threw for 187 yards and three TDs.