The Campus Colts walked into a nearly sold-out stadium knowing that almost everybody there wanted them to lose.
Newton’s first home game of the year mixed with their reputation for drawing big crowds can be seen as intimidating to some teams.
Campus used it as fuel on way to a 29-20 victory.
“We came out big and we didn’t come out shy because we knew Newton was getting ready to play a game of the week, so there’s going to be a lot of people in the house on their home turf,” Cameron Harvey, senior slotback and defensive back said. “We came out ready to fight.”
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The Colts were able to hush the crowd of Railer fans the very first play of the game when Harvey ran the ball in 91 yards for a kickoff return for a touchdown.
“Their crowd was going wild, so our team got excited,” Harvey said. “The kickoff return definitely set the tone for the game.”
Campus kept that momentum up with a nearly perfectly executed 13-yard touchdown from senior quarterback Evan Kruse to senior wide receiver Tyler Kahmann.
Nearing the end of the second quarter, Campus had a solid 15-point lead. Just when Campus thought they were in the clear to head into halftime with that lead, Newton went on a last-minute rally.
With under three minutes remaining in the half, Newton’s quarterback, senior Colton Davis, made a 32-yard pass to junior wide receiver Josh Edson for the touchdown.
The Railers were finally on the board, and they didn’t stop there. Newton got an interception with just a minute remaining in the half, which ultimately got them within a few yards of scoring another touchdown.
But Newton saw their opportunity to tie the game diminish when their offense couldn’t conquer Campus’ defense.
“That could have changed the landscape of the game,” Campus head coach Greg Slade said. “The defense came up with a big stop then.”
Slade said that those stops are what helped Campus carry the momentum into the second half.
“The stop right before half was huge,” Slade said. “It gave us a little more momentum coming out of halftime.”
Campus came out in the second half with a big play that set the tone once again.
Harvey, who plays both sides of the ball, deflected, then intercepted, a Newton pass. The ball was called dead due to a flag, but two plays later Harvey ran the ball in for another touchdown.
Almost identically to how Newton ended the first half, the Railers started connecting offensively — but it was too late in the game.
Newton had the ball as the time ran out, leaving Davis with no other option than to chuck the ball 50 yards into the end zone. Sophomore wide receiver Peyton Maxwell slid into the end zone and caught the ball for a last-second touchdown.
“Newton doesn’t give up, they’re a good team,” Kahmann said. “When they’re going on rallies we just got to fight back.”
Despite Newton’s last-second efforts, Campus came away with the 29-20 win, handing the Railers their first loss of the season.