By Josh Puckett
DULUTH - Norcross proved its No. 2 ranking in AAAAA is no fluke Friday night with a 31-7 win over Northview.
Despite a slow start that left the Blue Devils trailing 7-3 after the first quarter, Norcross picked up right where it left off after last week's 47-12 win over Duluth.
Settling for field goals of 30 and 37 yards from Chris Tanner to start the game, Norcross settled in for what became an oppressive offensive march. The Blue Devils, who alternated quarterbacks throughout the night, left the first frame to Nick Sorel. Sorel completed 2 of 4 attempts in the first frame, including a 49-yard strike to Devonta Bolton to set up the Blue Devils' second field goal.
But where the offense took a quarter to get going, the defense hit the ground running. After a combined sack by John Kelly and Thinh Ho forced a Northview punt to conclude the first series, Northview capped a 90-yard drive with a 3-yard touchdown by running back Samoir Patrick. But that was the only time Northview was allowed to sniff the red zone for the rest of the evening.
"I thought we came out a little slow," said Norcross coach Keith Maloof. "You'RE not going to be perfect all the time. The thing the defense did for us was keep us in it. (Northview) only had that one drive for a score and that was it. Other than that, we kept them at bay."
Norcross fired back in the second quarter with its second field goal of the half before Sorel found Brice Butler on a 8-yard touchdown strike to give Norcross a 12-7 lead. After converting the two-point conversion on a second strike to Butler, the Blue Devils ended the half with 14-7 lead with no need to look back.
Giving the Titans little hope of a comeback, Norcross began the second half onslaught with a 12-yard Charles King touchdown pass to Butler. Sorel returned in the next series to hit Bolton with a 45-yard touchdown pass to put the Blue Devils up 28-7.
The Blue Devils scored one final time with 41 seconds remaining in the game on a 39-yard field goal by Tanner.
The Blue Devils' D.J. Adams finished the night with 127 yards on 22 carries. Sorel finished the game with 158-yards passing and two touchdowns, completing 8 of 13 attempts. Norcross' other signal caller, King, tallied 23 yards passing and a touchdown. Butler finished the night with 53-yards receiving and two touchdowns.
Norcross: Chris Tanner 30 FG, 6:45
Northview: Samoir Patrick 3 run (Carter Rhoad kick) 2:46
Norcross: Tanner 37 FG, 9:44
Norcross: Brice Butler 8 pass from Nick Sorel (Butler pass from Sorel) 2:38
Norcross: Butler 12 pass from Charles King (Tanner kick) 7:35
Norcross: Devonta Bolton 45 pass from Sorel (Tanner kick) 4:34
Norcross: Tanner 39 FG, :41