LONGMONT — Cameron Nellor has no trouble recalling the last time Thompson Valley was on the right end of a final score.

It was Sept. 20, 2016 and Nellor, then a freshman, was able to take a few snaps under center as the Eagles finished off Berthoud 28-0.

Nellor admits that was a long time ago, however, and since then Thompson Valley had dropped 20 straight contests. But Thursday night with a chance to snap that losing streak, and now firmly entrenched as the Eagles starting quarterback, Nellor wasn't about to let a victory slip away.

Nellor ran for three scores and threw for two more as Thompson Valley opened up North Valley League play with a resounding 47-17 victory over Niwot at Everly-Montgomery Stadium.

"There's nothing like this, it's been what? Twenty games?" said Nellor, who accounted for 277 yards of offense. "This was the best win I've ever had in my life."

It may have been the best football game he's ever had as well. Nellor was equally as effective through the air as he was on the ground. After both teams struggled to find any rhythm early in the first quarter, he took advantage of a special teams gaffe by the Cougars that set Thompson Valley up at the Niwot 28. On the very next play Nellor busrt up the middle, broke several arm tackles and danced around a couple more defenders en route to a 28-yard touchdown and a 7-0 lead.

On the Eagles next possession, Nellor led them 72 yards in five plays, this time rumbling in from 10 yards out to open a 14-0 lead with 10:50 left in the first half.


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Nellor said that second score was when Thompson Valley (1-5, 1-0) started to believe they could win the contest.

"When we got that second score I though, 'Yeah, we've got this,'" Nellor said. "We had lost some games that we should have won in the past, and they had won some they should might not have. That wiped it all out."

Niwot had broke a similar losing streak earlier in the year, losing 19 straight at one point, and had built momentum heading into the contest by winning three straight. But the Cougars (3-3, 0-1) hurt themselves with costly penalties and special team mistakes and couldn't keep up with the Eagles.

Niwot High School’s Eric Ruiz runs the ball during a game against Thompson Valley on Thursday at Longmont High School.
Niwot High School's Eric Ruiz runs the ball during a game against Thompson Valley on Thursday at Longmont High School. (Jeremy Papasso / Staff Photographer)

Thompson Valley created separation late in the first half, getting a touchdown toss from Nellor that pushed the lead to 20-7, and then came up with a big stop on a fourth-down play to set up a score on its second drive of the third quarter to push the lead to 26-7.

Niwot did find some success in the ground game, and junior running back Liam Flanagan finished with 130 yards rushing and a score.

"No matter what we're going to continue to pick up the hammer, and we're going to continue to swing it and try to crack that stone," Niwot coach Jeremy Lanter said.

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Thompson Valley 47, Niwot 17

At Everly-Montgomery Stadium

Thompson Valley713207—47Niwot07010—17

First quarter

Thompson Valley — Cameron Nellor 28 run (Caleb Burton kick).

Second quarter

Thompson Valley — Nellor 10 run (Burton kick). Niwot — Julian Molina 10 run (Erick Ruiz kick). Thompson Valley — Trey Kreikemeier 4 pass from Nellor (kick fail).

Third quarter

Thompson Valley — Nellor 3 run (kick fail). Thompson Valley — Brock Nellor 4 pass from Cameron Nellor (James Dyken pass from Cameron Nellor). Thompson Valley — Eli Mendoza 40 interception return (kick fail).

Fourth quarter

Niwot — Josh Palomares 32 kick. Thompson Valley — Brock Nellor 10 run (Nathan Apolonio kick). `Niwot — Liam Flanagan 1 run (Palomares kick).