Three plays into Friday's 7A opening-round playoff against Van Buren, Northside came up aces both defensively and offensively.

Elijah Tabut intercepted a pass on the game's first play. Then two plays later, Grizzly quarterback Deuce Wise darted 59 yards into the end zone as Northside never looked back.

The Grizzlies built a 28-0 lead by halftime en route to a 35-0 win against the Pointers at Mayo-Thompson Stadium as Northside picked up another solid all-around win for the second straight week following a stretch of three straight defeats.

"They did a great job and I'm proud of them," Northside coach Mike Falleur said. "(Van Buren) moved (the ball) a little bit, but we got turnovers and stopped them when we needed to, and most of the time took advantage of it on offense.

"We went through a stretch where we played three really good teams and we turned the football over and you can't do that, so hopefully we've learned from that and we're going to get better."

With the win, Northside (7-4) will reach the 7A quarterfinals for the third consecutive season. The Grizzlies will travel to Bentonville next Friday for the quarterfinal, seeking to avenge a loss to Bentonville two years ago in the exact same round.

"We're going to play a good football team next week and we've got to get better," Falleur said. "We've got to go to work Monday and get ready for it."

Northside turned in a huge game defensively in Friday's win.

The Grizzlies forced three first-half turnovers, cashing each of those in for touchdowns, held the Pointers to 11 yards rushing on the night and came up with five sacks, three coming from senior defensive lineman Raytel Rone, with lineman Alex Nguyen and linebacker J.J. Mills coming up with the other sacks.

"I think we played well and we told them it was important that we start fast, and we started out with Elijah Tabut getting that pick on the first play," Northside defensive coordinator Felix Curry said. "I think that set the tone for us, and we knew they were a good team and we knew they were going to come out and try to do something big early and Elijah happened to be in the right place at the right time and that got us rolling, but it was a great performance by all of them."

Tabut came up with that aforementioned interception on the opening play at his own 48. On the next play, Wise fumbled while attempting to run a keeper and got the ball back, but not before losing 7 yards.

But Wise more than made up for that one play later. He took another keeper and found space, breaking free down the right sideline to finish off a 59-yard TD.

Henry Hernandez's PAT put the Grizzlies up 7-0 just 1:03 elapsed into the game.

Later in the first quarter, Tabut forced another turnover by Tabut, this time laying a big hit to a receiver on a completed pass to knock the ball loose. Linebacker Stetson Van Matre made the recovery at the Grizzly 30.

That set up another Northside TD in a seven-play series. Junior Jackson King got the call on a pitch to the right and darted 18 yards into the end zone, and a Hernandez PAT made it 14-0.

After forcing a Van Buren punt on the next series, Northside took over at its own 6 with 10:17 left until halftime.

The Grizzlies then churned nearly seven minutes off the clock, 6:58 to be exact, in a 16-play 94-yard march, going 2-for-3 in third-down conversions and successfully converting a fourth-down attempt. Senior tailback Eli Bolton's 8-yard run up the middle capped it, and Hernandez came on to kick another PAT to put Northside up 21-0 with 3:19 remaining in the half.

Just 51 seconds later, it was 28-0 courtesy of another Grizzly takeaway.

Two plays after lineman Khaden Washington recovered a fumble at the Pointer 20, King took an option pitch from Wise and went in from 9 yards out.

King had his third TD on the night in the third quarter as he was wide open in the end zone to haul in a 22-yard pass from Wise, finishing off a 10-play 66-yard drive. Hernandez's fifth successful PAT made it 35-0 with 2:29 left in the third, forcing the clock to run continuously from that point.

"I wouldn't have been able to do anything without my other teammates out there with the great blocking and the great throws by Deuce, blocking on the outside perimeter, it all comes together and it makes good touchdowns," King, who returned for last week's win against Southside after missing the previous several games due to an injury, said. "I try to do whatever I can to help out the team. ... I'm glad to be back out here playing at playoff time; it's the perfect time of the year."

Wise ended up rushing for 194 yards on 23 carries, as the Grizzlies finished with 297 yards on the ground. The Grizzlies' quarterback also completed 8-of-13 passes for 71 yards, with King catching four passes for 36 yards.

Van Buren (4-7), making its first trip to the playoffs since 2011, got 75 yards passing from sophomore quarterback Gary Phillips and 51 yards from senior quarterback Christian Morrow. Jude Bartholomew, a junior, caught six of the Pointers' eight completed passes for 101 yards.