TACOMA — Senior Brandon Wellington scored on a 1-yard touchdown run in overtime as Eastside Catholic (ranked No. 58 in the HSFB100) rallied from a 28-point, second-half deficit to beat Bellevue 48-42 in the Class 3A high school championship football game on Friday night at the Tacoma Dome.
Eastside Catholic (Sammamish, WA) beat Bellevue (WA) for the second straight year in the fourth consecutive title-game showdown between the two schools.
Bellevue had the ball first in overtime and missed a 39-yard field goal attempt. Eastside Catholic took its possession at the Bellevue 25 and senior Harley Kirsch threw two passes to Wellington for 24 yards to set up the winning touchdown. Kirsch completed 21 of 32 for 249 yards and three touchdowns.
Wellington forced the overtime when he ran 11 yards to tie it at 42 with 1:24 left in the fourth quarter. Eastside Catholic trailed 42-14 midway through the third quarter. The Crusaders recovered a Bellevue fumble at the Wolverines 46 to set up the tying score.
Kirsch threw three consecutive touchdown passes, including two to Hunter Bryant, to rally the Sammamish school from east of Seattle. Kirsch’s 4-yard toss to Matt Laris cut the lead to 42-35 with 5:59 remaining in the fourth quarter after the Crusaders had stopped Bellevue on a fourth-and-3 play at the Eastside Catholic 49.
Ercle Terrell led Bellevue with 227 yards and four touchdowns on 33 carries. He ran for 129 yards and four touchdowns on 13 carries to help Bellevue to a 35-14 halftime lead. Benaiah Ellington intercepted two passes in Eastside Catholic territory to set up two of the scores. A high snap to the punter recovered by Bellevue set up a 1-yard touchdown by Terrell.
Eastside Catholic won its second state title while Bellevue had hoped to win its 13th. The Crusaders beat Bellevue 35-13 last year to end the Wolverines’ streak of 67 consecutive wins and six straight championships.
Wellington returned a kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown for Eastside Catholic late in the second quarter. Wellington, a University of Washington commit, scored three touchdowns in last year’s title game.