BY BRIAN HAMILTON
NEW TAZEWELL – Northview Academy traveled to New Tazewell on Friday night to take on Claiborne in a non-region contest. After getting blown out by Alcoa last week, the Cougars responded with a dominant 35-0 win over the Bulldogs.
“Cruz-Mendoza had some good runs and we moved the ball around — it wasn’t just one guy,” Northview Academy head coach Heath Woods said. “We are looking forward to building off this.”
Northview jumped out to a 22-0 halftime lead, en route to a 35-0 win. Cougars quarterback Alex Cruz-Mendoza ran for 138 yards and three touchdowns on five carries, while passing for 54 yards and a touchdown on 5-of-7 passing.
William Kirby caught four of Cruz-Mendoza’s passes for 51 yards and a touchdown. In addition to Cruz-Mendoza’s big night on the ground, Tyler Gildersleeve ran for 80 yards and a touchdown on six carries, while Nick Schroth went for 70 yards on six rushes.
The win was Northview Academy’s first on-field win, after the Cougars picked up a forfeit win over West Greene earlier in the season.
“This feels good,” Woods said. “We were 1-2 and didn’t even play the one win, so it was out first game outscoring anybody. It is something to build on.”
Northview (2-2, 0-1 Class 3A Region 2) will travel to Austin-East (0-3, 0-1) as the Cougars look to continue their momentum with a much needed region win. Claiborne (0-3) will have next Friday off.