The Cougar Den Celebrates Multiple Successes on Friday Night as Ladies Win

January 16, 2015

by Len Lathrop

Wow, what a night in Litchfield:  a 1,000-point scorer, a state championship banner raising and a sound thumping of Prospect Mountain High School.  Where to start … the focus seemed to be on the 12 points that Hannah Neild needed to reach 1,000 career points as a Cougar.

The countdown was posted above the mats at the end of the court.  Family and friends, and even her future college coach, were there holding placards with 1,000 on them.  You could see the 1,000-points pressure on Neild.  The baskets just were not dropping for her, and with every miss, there was a moan from the fans.

But at the start of the second quarter, things begin to turn around.  With about three seconds left in the half, Neild moves from the right across the box with a left-handed layup; there it is a foul and she is going to the line.  With 2.7 seconds on the clock, the ball falls in the net and the Cougar Den is all excitement.  The Lady Cougars are on the court, and Neild is presented with flowers and the painted basketball to honor the accomplishment.  A game note:  the score is 18-27.  Neild is a multi-sport athlete at Campbell in soccer, basketball and softball; her acknowledgements include being the NHIAA student athlete in September of 2014, All-State honorable mention for soccer in 2013, basketball second All-State team as a freshman and sophomore, All-State first team as a junior and the NHBCO Division 3 Player of the Year.  In softball she was named All State last year.  She volunteers with the Teen Suicide Prevention task force and is involved with Spirit Week.  She has a 3.9 GPA and is a member of the National Honor Society.

“Hannah is one of our finest seniors.  She has been a three-sport athlete all four years of high school.  She has achieved a tremendous amount of success, but more importantly, she has been a major component in the success of her respective teams.  Hannah is active in many clubs and organizations as well.  She is a fine young lady with outstanding character,” Said Campbell High School Athletic Director John Patterson.

Neild will be attending Merrimack College next year and playing basketball with them at the NCAA Division 2 level.  After completing her education, Hannah wants to work teaching the deaf.  Her career goal comes from her own disability with hearing loss suffered from an inner ear infection as a very young child; she uses hearing aids, which have not slowed her down.

During half time the 2014 state champion girls Division 3 basketball team received their plaques and raised the banner to the Cougar Den’s rafters.  The Campbell gym is getting very full of state championship banners, a notable feat for a young school.

The game against Prospect Mountain High School began the second half and a different Ladies Cougar team took the court and controlled all aspects of the second half with the final score being CHS 57 and PMHS 38.  Neild led scoring with 21 points followed by Lexi Putzlocker with 14.  Both Kali Trunca and Emily Moreau had six and were followed by Amber Gibbons with five, Gabi Scot with three and Jess Manning with two.

After the game, Principal Laurie Rothhaus paid high compliments to Hannah remarking “how she set the court on fire as a freshman…she is a leader at Campbell, she has confidence and (she) always gives 100 percent.  She is that all-American girl.”