By Jay Tidwell
Special to the Journal
MOOREVILLE – North Pontotoc’s goal wasn’t simply to make the playoffs or win the Division 1-3A title.
The Vikings wanted to finish the regular season with an unblemished record against every other team in the district. Brooks Shannon and a stifling defense helped them get it done.
Shannon ran for a touchdown and caught a pair of scoring passes to lead North Pontotoc in a 34-0 win against Mooreville on Friday.
“We won the division last week, and we tried to keep our guys focused and talked all week that we wanted to be perfect,” North Pontotoc coach Brian Sutton said. “We didn’t want anybody to be able to say, ‘Well, they were division champs, but we beat them.’”
The defense for North Pontotoc (8-3, 5-0) did its part, logging its first shutout of the season.
“We wanted there to be no doubt in anybody’s mind that we were the No. 1 team in our division,” Sutton said. “We proved it by the record. We were 5-0.”
Jeremy Wilkes, a senior, led all rushers with 17 carries for 128 yards for the Vikings, ranked No. 3 by the Journal in Class 4A/3A.
“We wanted to get our offense running and just keep the ball going down the field,” said Shannon, a junior, who scored on a 1-yard run in the first quarter, a 16-yard catch from Trey Jolly in the second, and a 15-yard reception in the third.
Quarterback John Thomas Peugh and the Troopers started to get traction on offense to open the second half, but turned the ball over at their 37.
Marcus Green scored on the next play on a run out of the Wildcat formation.
North’s Zay Cullens, a freshman, finished the scoring with a 12-yard run in the fourth.
The loss ended Mooreville’s season at 3-7 overall, 1-4 in the division.
“I’m really proud of my kids for fighting them,” Mooreville coach Kevin Austin said. “I thought we battled them hard, but they have a good football team and a lot of experience and a super defense.”