There were no fireworks, no last second drives or down-to-the-wire touchdowns at Hilda J. Richardson Field on Friday.
But Northeast isn’t going to complain, despite committing 13 penalties, as it posted a 20-0 shutout of Clarksville in a District 10-AAA game.
The Eagles (4-1, 4-0) didn’t light up the scoreboard and neither did Clarksville (3-3, 3-1). Both teams were sloppy for much of the game, but especially in the fourth quarter, when double penalties were called on five occasions. Seven personal foul flags were thrown between the teams.
“The penalties killed us,” Northeast coach Isaac Shelby said. “This (officiating) crew calls them tight, and we didn’t adjust. It’s not anything that the officials did wrong. We just didn’t adjust to the way they called the game. It was pathetic on our part to have that many mistakes.”
Yet Shelby’s defense stopped a Wildcats offense that had been averaging more than 25 points a game this year. Northeast gave up 173 rushing yards to Clarksville’s Dallin Bridges, but the senior back also carried the ball 32 times. Bridges either ran, caught or threw the ball on 39 of the Wildcats’ 51 plays.
Bridges came into the game needing only 45 yards to surpass 1,000 yards. He got that in the first minute of the second quarter.
“He’s our workhorse,” Clarksville coach Ken Busbee said. “Until he tells us he doesn’t want the ball anymore, we’re going to ride him.”
Clarksville threw three interceptions, including one on a fake punt in the second half. The Wildcats finished with just 230 total yards.
Northeast had two touchdowns called back because of holding penalties and finished with 391 total yards.
Tennessee commitment Jalen Reeves-Maybin finished with just nine carries for 53 yards but he completed eight of 13 passes for 166 yards.