SAN JOSE -- Serra didn't allow it to come down to one play this time.

Instead, the second-ranked Padres brought a flashy no-huddle offense and an ultra-aggressive defense to San Jose City College and defeated top-ranked Bellarmine College Prep 17-7 on Friday night.

The victory avenged Serra's two heartbreaking losses to Bellarmine last season and gave the Padres a statement triumph in the West Catholic Athletic League opener for both teams.

"This is the game we've been waiting for," Serra quarterback Anthony Smock said. "Since last year, that was on our mind -- Bellarmine. We just came out and executed tonight. It definitely set the foundation for league, but we've still got to build off it."

Serra, which had lost seven consecutive games to Bellarmine, got contributions from running back Kava Cassidy, Smock and several others on offense. But its defense was the bigger story of the night.

Every time Bellarmine attempted to chip into Serra's lead, the Padres made a play. They put pressure on quarterback K.J. Carta-Samuels seemingly every time he dropped back to pass and never allowed Bellarmine's usually steady double-wing offense to sustain drives.

"I thought the defense was great," Serra coach Patrick Walsh said. "They did an exceptional job. There wasn't a lot of second-chance runs. When they got hit, they might have bent the pile for 1 or 2 yards. But for the most part, when they got hit, they were tackled."

Cassidy rushed for 101 yards and a touchdown in 25 carries. Smock, in his first start since replacing injured starter Matthew Fa'aita, threw for 167 yards and a touchdown.

Serra led 7-0 after one quarter and 14-7 at halftime. It stretched the lead to 10 in the middle of the third quarter and held on from there.

"We didn't execute well, and they did," Bellarmine coach Mike Janda said. "I thought they played a great game, executed and played tough on both lines of scrimmage.

"And they really do a great job with the offense. They keep you off balance, and they make plays. We just couldn't answer."

Cassidy's 1-yard run, which followed Smock's 59-yard pass to Kelepi Lataimua, gave Serra a 7-0 lead with 2:14 left in the first quarter.

Bellarmine tied the score on Carta-Samuels' 1-yard run in the second quarter, but Serra quickly responded. The Padres regained the lead when Smock threw a 25-yard touchdown pass to Hamilton Anoa'i.

Cassidy had talked before the game about Bellarmine stopping him a yard shy of the goal line as the Padres were about to take a late lead in a section semifinal last season.

He noted that the one play motivated him through the entire offseason, and the junior looked like a determined player on Serra's opening possession.

On third-and-20 from the Serra 46, Cassidy caught a screen pass and fought through several defenders for a 23-yard gain. Earlier in that series, he ran for 14 yards on third-and-8.

The drive stalled, and a fake-field attempt fell short.

But it was clear that Serra badly wanted to erase last season's memories.

"It feels great for me and for my team," Cassidy said. "We were keying on these guys, and we just happened to come out with a W. This win's big -- game one of the league and a great way to win a league opener, against Bellarmine."

SERRA 17, BELLARMINE 7

Serra          7          "‚7          "‚3          "‚0--17

Bellarmine          0          "‚7          "‚0          "‚0-- 7

S -- Cassidy 1 run (Bodley kick)

BCP -- Carta-Samuels 1 run (Bush kick)

S -- Anoa'i 25 pass from Smock (Bodley kick)

S -- Bodley 25 FG

Records -- Serra 3-1, 1-0; Bellarmine College Prep 3-1, 0-1.