Campbell explodes for five TD in Holy Cross football’s quarterfinal win

The Marquis Campbell Show couldn’t have aired at a better time for the Holy Cross football team.

Campbell scored five touchdowns, including four on the ground in the second half, and the third-seeded Crusaders knocked off sixth-seeded New Fairfield, 42-36, in a Class S quarterfinal game Tuesday night at Municipal Stadium’s Ray Snyder Sr. Field. Holy Cross avenged a loss to New Fairfield in last year’s quarterfinal, and it will play at second-seeded Bloomfield on Sunday at 12:30 p.m. in a semifinal matchup. The second-seeded Warhawks defeated seventh-seeded Seymour of the NVL, 42-21, in their quarterfinal game in Bloomfield. The Crusaders (9-2) won a playoff game for the first time since claiming the Class S state championship in 2011.

Holy Cross led, 42-23, with 8:19 to play after Campbell’s fifth and final touchdown of the game. WATR football play-by-play man Chris Saunders had Campbell for 173 rushing yards and 176 receiving yards at that point in the game. Campbell wound up with over 200 yards rushing, according to Saunders.

Holy Cross got off to a tough start when New Fairfield scored on a Justin McCormack touchdown pass to Chris Kakos with 8:25 left in the opening quarter. The teams went back and forth from there with the Rebels claiming a 17-14 halftime lead over the Crusaders.

Holy Cross struck quickly in the second half. Campbell scored from five yards out, and a Matiz extra point gave the Crusaders a 21-17 lead in the first minute of the third quarter. Kyle Martin responded with a kickoff return for a touchdown to give the Rebels a 23-21 lead with 10:45 to go in the third quarter. Campbell’s second touchdown of the quarter and the Matiz extra point put Holy Cross ahead for good, 28-23, with 7:51 to play in the third quarter. Campbell scored one more time in the third quarter, and Matiz’s third extra point of the period gave the Crusaders a 35-23 lead at the 3:49 mark.

Campbell added his final score at the 8:19 mark of the fourth quarter. New Fairfield scored two touchdowns in a little over four minutes to pull to within 42-36 in the final minute. Holy Cross was able to hang on, and move on, to the semifinal round.

PHOTO CAPTION: Holy Cross junior Marquis Campbell (1) had plenty of reason to celebrate Tuesday night after erupting for five touchdowns in a 42-36 Class S quarterfinal win over New Fairfield in Waterbury. (Copyright, Sports on CT-69, file)