Newtown's Lou Fenaroli rushed into the history books as part of the Nighthawks 33-7 win against the Bethel Wildcats Friday night in Blue and Gold Stadium.
The running back broke the record for the most single-season rushes – 1,462 yards – set 19 years ago by Joe Lato, who now coaches football at Weston.
"I think I only broke it by 3 yards," the smiling Fenaroli said after the game.
The Newtown High School senior has had a remarkable season after a disappointing one last year in which injuries limited his playing time, starting in only five or so games.
During the off-season, Fenaroli hit the weight room with a passion, bulking up and concentrating on his fitness. His teammates, similarly, have been trying to keep free of injury as much as possible.
"It's definitely a big difference," Fenaroli said. "We're trying to keep healthy."
The results have been paying off for the Nighthawks, as they now advance to 7-1, and have a shot at making it to the state Class LL finals. They are the No. 4 seed at the moment. Next-up will be Bunnell, which has a 6-1 record with its sole loss so far this year coincidentally coming against Bethel.
Offensively, the Nighthawks have been dominating. Fenaroli has been the go-to player and a major part of the team's success.
"He's got speed, he's got power," Newtown coach Steve George said. "He's something special."
In Friday's game, the Nighthawks also received a couple of key contributions from Jake Tolson, who kicked a pair of field goals in the first half to give Newtown an early 6-0 lead; all-around Dan Hebert, who made a pivotal interception; freshman Julian Dunn who converted a fake punt into a touchdown throw to Chris Devaney; and Justin Devellis, who scored on a touchdown pass from quarterback Andrew Tarantino.
Following Bethel's only touchdown and an attempted on-side kick that took a short bounce, Newtown's No. 83, Matt Vavrek, was able to pick up the ball in midfield and run it down for the final touchdown to seal Newtown's win.