The Sailors' next test in league is at Huntington Beach (5-1, 1-0 in league), which coaches picked to finish third in league. That spot belonged to Newport Harbor last year and it clinched a spot in the playoffs.
Newport Harbor (3-3, 1-0) plans to return to the postseason for a third straight year.
The defense led the way against Fountain Valley (3-3, 0-1). The Sailors in the first half didn't allow a first down, or the Barons to cross midfield.
Newport Harbor scored on a 53-yard interception return for a touchdown by linebacker Marty Taylor to end the first half, giving Newport Harbor a 26-0 lead.
"Marty made a great pick at the end of the half that really swung the momentum to our side," Brinkley said.
The interception was the first of two thrown by Fountain Valley quarterback Chris d'Entremont.
The junior, making his fourth straight start after the Barons lost their returning starter, Josiah Fernandez, to a broken collarbone, almost hit as many Sailor players with passes as he did his teammates.
In the third quarter, safety Zach Wade picked off d'Entremont, who only completed three of 14 passes for 27 yards. Wade returned the interception 63 yards, close to the red zone. The turnover led to a 33-yard touchdown pass by Cole Blower to Blake Bell.
Special teams proved to be an issue for the Barons against the Sailors for the second straight year. The Sailors blocked two punts last year.
This year, Fountain Valley's first punt traveled only 16 yards, setting up the Sailors' first touchdown. Grant Frazier scored on a one-yard fullback dive.
The senior earned the touchdown after lining up on the offensive line the past couple of weeks due to injuries to guards Ted Barry and Hamilton Randle. Barry returned and Frazier went back to fullback.