CUMMING - It was big plays from the start for Norcross, which dominated Region 7-AAAAA foe North Forsyth in a 38-0 win.
Itching to get started, Norcross (4-0, 2-0 region) was called back five yards for a false start before Blue Devils' quarterback Bryce Dykes opened the game with a 70-yard bomb to Brice Butler in an 18-second touchdown drive.
North Forsyth (0-4, 0-2 region) couldn't get anything going on its first possession and punted the ball right back to Norcross.
Turning the ball back over to the Blue Devils proved costly as Tyler Maloof scooped up the punt and returned the ball for a 90-yard TD. Maloof, a junior, is the son of Norcross head coach Kevin Maloof. Dykes said the big play could perhaps help to alleviate the teasing Maloof is afforded by his teammates.
"He's a good kid and for him to get one is great," Dykes said. "Every time he makes a mistake he gets twice as much crap because he's the coach's son. For him to do that is a great thing and it helped our offense out."
Dykes connected a second time in the first quarter with Butler for a 37-yard TD, this time on the first play of the drive.
Dykes said he felt confident the team would win after his early touchdown pass.
"After the first play I felt comfortable," the senior said. "I felt like we had these guys. I felt we could get it and put it to them."
But North Forsyth wouldn't give up easily. The Raiders sacked Dykes for a 13-yard loss, part of a total of 18 yards of losses on the opening drive of the second quarter. Quarterback Eli Chester gained confidence after a connection with Alex Henderson gave the Raiders a first down, but the team quickly lost steam after Chester was sacked for an 11-yard loss and Ryan Browning was intercepted by the Blue Devils' Darius Hanks.
Norcross added a fourth TD on its last drive before halftime when Dykes led receivers Hanks, Demetrius Hill and Sam Snider on a 3-for-3, 46-yard drive. Snider caught the eight-yard pass to put the Blue Devils up 28-0. Dykes had 145 of his 186 passing yards before halftime.
The Blue Devils wrapped things up in the third quarter as Hill rushed for the final TD, and kicker Chris Tanner connected on a 31-yard field goal.
Keith Maloof said he was happy to return to an offensive game after his team was held to just one touchdown by Grayson in the team's 7-6 victory last weekend.
"I'm really proud of these guys for coming out and doing a good job by taking care of business, scoring early and often, establishing things and playing great defense," he said.