Nick Campanella Scores Four Touchdowns, as Georgetown Defeats Davidson, 35-14 in Season-Opener
Sept. 1, 2012
DAVIDSON, N.C. (AP) - A lightning delay of over an hour could not slow down junior running back Nick Campanella (Roselle, Ill./Montini Catholic), who posted career-highs with four touchdowns, while rushing for 127 yards, as the Georgetown University football team (1-0) defeated Davidson (0-1), 35-14 at Richardson Stadium to open the 2012 season.
Campanella scored on runs of 53 yards, two yards and 45 yards and caught a touchdown pass for nine yards, while junior quarterback Aaron Aiken (Morristown, N.J./The Lawrenceville School), who came on to replace injured starter Isaiah Kempf, rushed for 109 yards on 21 carries and passed for 128 yards, completing 8-of-21 passes with two touchdowns to lead the offense.
The Hoyas defense stifled the Wildcats, forcing them to negative-18 rushing yards and holding last year's eighth ranked passing offense to 226 yards through the air. Georgetown's defense only allowed one drive of more than 25 yards. Senior linebacker Robert McCabe (Newtown Square, Pa./Malvern Prep) led the way with 17 tackles, including three tackles for loss. Junior linebacker Dustin Wharton (LaVale, Md./Allegany) had eight tackles, including three for loss and 1.5 sacks, while sophomore Alec May (Wrenthem, Mass./King Phillip) had two sacks for the Blue & Gray.
Georgetown suffered an early setback as Kempf was sidelined after taking a hard hit to the head; he would not return. On the Hoyas following series, Aiken's pass was intercepted by Davidson's Michael Corbett, who returned the interception to the Hoyas 34 yard line. Three plays later, Jonathan Carkhuff found Lanny Funsten on a 24-yard touchdown. After the extra point, Davidson led 7-0.
Aiken redeemed himself quickly, rushing for 32 on three carries, before connecting with Kevin Macari (Stamford, Conn./New Canaan) on a 48-yard touchdown pass to cap a seven play, 75-yard drive. Matt MacZura (Cranberry Twp., Pa./Central Catholic) tacked on an extra-point to tie the score at 7-7 with just under five minutes remaining in the first quarter.
Campanella put the Hoyas in front early in the second quarter, following strong blocking and bouncing to the right side and racing 53 yards down the sideline for a touchdown. The touchdown capped a nine-play 91 yard drive for Georgetown, making the score 14-7 leading into the half.
During the Hoyas second drive of the second half, Aiken found Daniel Sprotte (Garden City, N.Y./Chaminade) for an 18 yard gain to convert a third down. On the next play, Aiken connected on a 37-yard pass to Zack Wilke to take the Hoyas inside the Davidson 10 yard line. Two plays later Campanella plunged into the end zone from two yards out to give the Hoyas a 21-7 lead.
Momentum continued to favor the Hoyas, as Ty Parsons (Dallas, Texas/Dallas Christian) blocked Davidson's punt attempt on the Wildcats ensuing drive, giving the Hoyas the ball at the Wildcats 32 yard line. The Hoyas would use 10 plays, capped by Aiken's short pass to Campanella, who evaded a defender and ran into the end zone for his third touchdown of the day to give Georgetown a 28-7 lead going into the fourth quarter.
Davidson would respond late in the fourth quarter, putting together its longest drive of the game, as Jonathan Carkhuff, who was under heavy pressure throughout the night, found Reese Williams on a 15 yard touchdown pass in the corner of the end zone with 3:24 left in the game. The score cut the Hoyas lead in half, making it 28-14.
Davidson's failed onside kick gave the Hoyas the ball back at the Wildcats 47 yard line. Campanella rushed for two yards on the first play of the drive, then broke off a 45 yard touchdown to put the Hoyas in front, 35-14.
The Wildcats had one more opportunity, but May and Peter Daibes (Wayne, N.J./Wayne Hills) sacked Carkhuff on fourth down to seal the victory for the Hoyas in its third consecutive season-opening win over Davidson.
The return home to Multi-Sport Field to host Wagner (0-1) for its home-opener on Saturday, September 8 at 1 p.m. Tickets are available for the Hoyas game with Wagner and the rest of the 2012 Georgetown Football home games. For more information and to purchase, please click here or contact the Georgetown Athletic Ticket Office at 202-687-HOYA (4692) or firstname.lastname@example.org.