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Newtown Wins State HS Football Title on 7th Anniversary of Sandy Hook Shooting

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorDecember 15, 2019

A school bus passes a makeshift memorial to the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting as it takes students to Newtown High School December 18, 2012 in Newtown, Connecticut. Students in Newtown, excluding Sandy Hook Elementary School, return to school for the first time since last Friday's shooting at Sandy Hook which took the live of 20 students and 6 adults.  AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI / AFP / BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI        (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/Getty Images

Newtown High School football won the Connecticut state Class LL championship seven years to the day of the tragic Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, per Shawn McFarland of the Hartford Courant:

Shawn McFarland @McFarland_Shawn

FINAL — Oh. My. God. Street hits Riley Ward for a 36-yard game winning touchdown as time expires in the fourth quarter. Newtown 13, Darien 7. The Nighthawks (13-0) are your Class LL state champions. https://t.co/qCIF3E5Ruu

Both the high school and Sandy Hook are located in Newtown, Connecticut.

A moment of silence was held before the game to honor the anniversary, per McFarland:

Shawn McFarland @McFarland_Shawn

Next up, No. 1 Newtown (12-0) hosts No. 3 Darien (11-1) in the Class LL final. A moment of silence was held before the game to honor the seven year anniversary of the Sandy Hook shooting. Many Newtown players wearing green in honor.

Newtown won after quarterback Jack Street found Riley Ward for a 36-yard touchdown with no time remaining, capping a 13-7 win over Darien High School and a perfect 13-0 season.

The victory marks Newtown's fourth state title overall and first since 1992. The win is also the Nighthawks' first as a member of Class LL, which is the largest of Connecticut's four high school classes.

The Nighthawks defense was rolling coming into this contest, having allowed just 12 points over its previous six games. The team came through once again versus Darien with the six-point win.

Emotions obviously ran high after the game, with McFarland capturing a postgame scene:

Shawn McFarland @McFarland_Shawn

Newtown. Champs. 🏆 https://t.co/AclxqEF6cz


McFarland also expressed his own feelings an hour after the result:

Shawn McFarland @McFarland_Shawn

I still have not stopped shaking.

The victory also captured the attention of ESPN's Scott Van Pelt:

Scott Van Pelt @notthefakeSVP

7 years ago in Newtown, CT was an unspeakably awful day. 7 years to the day, kids from that town and school did this. Sports are amazing sometimes. https://t.co/Tko89MRnSj

Newtown outscored its three playoff opponents 65-7 en route to the state title.