LITCHFIELD — With not much happening offensively during a scoreless first half, the Campbell High School football team came out of the break ready to change that to open the third quarter of Saturday’s game against Monadnock.
Campbell senior running back Nate Perry finished off a 13-play drive to open the second half with a 2-yard scoring run, and the Cougars recovered the ensuing onside kick to set up a score by John Newell that sent Campbell on its way to an 18-0 Division III victory.
Perry finished with 85 yards on 17 carries, while Newell added 81 yards on 18 rushes to help propel Campbell to a 5-1 record. The Cougars’ only loss of the season came two weeks ago at the hands of undefeated Trinity, 14-0.
“Monadnock is tough as nails and they’re a well-coached program, but our kids executed better than them in the second half,” Campbell coach Glen Costello said. “And then we just shut them down. Our defense is playing pretty well. Over the past few years, defense has been a staple of Campbell football and these kids have taken that on and have been pretty consistent.”
Monadnock (3-2) carried some optimism into the week after a 16-14 loss to Trinity last week, but the Huskies could not get anything going. Monadnock gained two of its three first downs on the game’s opening drive and finished with 42 offensive yards.
“We just played terrible from the middle of the second quarter on,” Monadnock coach Rob Lotito said. “Offensively we were moving the ball a little bit, we made some plays, but they sacked us a lot. They had some great blitzes that beat us. It’s on me; we should never be in a situation where we’re a team can beat us like that.
Newell ripped off a 20-yard run on third-and-10 on the opening drive of the third quarter and his 9-yard run set up Perry’s score to give Campbell a 6-0 lead with 5:47 left in the quarter.
The Cougars weren’t content, as they caught Monadnock off guard with the onside kick. This time, a Perry 14-yard run was followed by a 15-yard touchdown scamper by Newell to give Campbell a 12-0 lead.
Jackson Kanaley scored the game’s final touchdown with a 5-yard run early in the fourth.
Campbell made it difficult all day on Monadnock QB Carson Shanks, who was sacked five times and completed only 5 of 17 passes for 36 yards with an interception. Campbell defensive ends George Ivas (two sacks) and Nick Hershberger made their home in Monadnock’s backfield all day.
“Those are two kids who’ve bought into (assistant coach Corey Shepard)’s defense and they really get after it,” Costello said. “(Ivas) is senior and a great program kid, while (Hershberger) is an up-and-coming freshman, so that bodes well for the future as well.”