Staff Photo: John Bohn Mountain View defensive back Greg Burns (4) tackles Archer running back Ernest Alexander (8) during the first quarter of Friday's game.
LAWRENCEVILLE -- Since opening up in 2009, both Mountain View and Archer have developed a natural rivalry, comparing successes with the other.
Mountain View may have had the early edge in the series, but Friday night's results show that Archer may have the upper hand.
Two Archer running backs topped the 100-yard mark and Ernest Alexander scored four touchdowns as the Tigers opened the 2012 season with a solid 46-7 win over the Bears.
"It's always great to win your first one of the year," Archer head coach Andy Dyer said. "Our defense played lights out, especially against an offense we don't see that often. Mountain View played hard and we had to match that tonight."
The running game for Archer (1-0) also played well as the team rolled up 335 yards rushing. Sean Fowler was the top gainer, getting 133 yards on nine carries with one TD, while Alexander tallied 110 yards on 20 carries with three TDs.
"He's our workhorse and he had a big night for us," Dyer said of Alexander, whose fourth TD came on a 30-yard pass. "Fowler also had a big night."
Mountain View was its own worst enemy as the Bears (0-1) had trouble hanging on to the ball. Mountain View fumbled the ball four times in the first quarter alone and finished the game with nine fumbles. Even though only one of those resulted in a turnover, it made it difficult for the offense to find its ryhtym.
"We didn't execute well," said Mountain View head coach Doug Giacone, who was making his head coaching debut at the helm for the Bears. "Any time you fumble on first and second downs, it gets you out of synch and you're always trying to play catch up."
Playing catch up is what the Bears did most of the night as Archer took an early lead with 13 points in the first quarter. The first two possessions resulted in six points when Zach Wachholz connected on field goals of 48 and 42 yards.
Mountain View then looked like it had found its offensive stroke when it picked up its initial first down of the game on the ensuing possession, but a fumble after a long reception led to a turnover.
That set up a short drive starting from the Bears' 33-yard line and ended when Alexander scored on an 8-yard run.
Mountain View responded in the second by forcing a turnover, recovering a fumble after a bad pitch. The Bears cashed in for seven points when Marvin Elam scored on a 3-yard run. Elam led the Bears in rushing with 80 yards on 16 carries with one TD.
However, that momentum was short-lived as Archer responded with two more scores to close out the first half. Fowler broke loose for a 53-yard TD run and Alexander hauled in a 30-yard middle screen in the closing seconds of the half as the Tigers built a 25-7 cushion.
Mountain View's defense kept the game close in the third by keeping Archer scoreless, but the offense couldn't take advantage. The big blow came when another long drive came up empty when a field goal attempt late in the third went wide left.
"Anytime you get close and don't score, it takes the wind out of your sails," Giacone said.
Archer would shake off its sluggish third quarter and pull away in the fourth with three TDs. Alexander provided two of them with runs of 19 and two yards, while Blake Woods closed out the scoring with a 2-yard plunge.
K.J. Parmer also made his first start at quarterback for the Tigers and played well, hitting on 5 of 10 passes for 86 yards and one TD with no interceptions. He also rushed eight times for 37 yards.