Sacred Heart Schools, Atherton (SHS) Lower & Middle School (LMS) Boys’ Athletic Director Jeff Reynolds remembers the exact circumstances of how the first eighth grade girls’ flag football game against Menlo School came to be.
“It was 2002, when my daughter was in the eighth grade. Girls in that class especially liked competition, so we got together with Menlo to establish the game,” said Reynolds. “My daughter has great memories from the game—it was fun for everyone, so we decided to keep the tradition going.”
For 16 years, beloved community member and past parent Bill Campbell was the girls’ coach for their annual game, as well as the head coach of the Sacred Heart boys’ eighth grade flag football team. After his passing in 2016, the girls’ game was renamed the “Campbell Cup” in his honor.
Campbell’s impact, generosity, and love for SHS is still felt throughout campus, and his mentorship of boys and girls in the eighth grade has left a lasting legacy.
“Boys and girls alike share the same view—that playing for Coach Campbell was the highlight of their eighth grade year,” said Reynolds. “His devotion to coaching kids about what football can mean as a team sport, and the life lessons it brings with it, are at the core of what a Sacred Heart student-athlete is all about. His inspiration and love for the game and his players will forever remain in the hearts of the students, coaches, and parents that were lucky enough to have him on their sidelines.”
“The energy at the first game after Bill’s passing was unbelievable,” recalls LMS Girls’ Athletic Director Sue McDonald. “That was the game when the girls beat Menlo by one point, and we had the new Campbell Cup trophy. Those girls are freshmen in college now—it’s something they’ll always remember.”
At an LMS assembly earlier this spring, a pair of high schoolers took the stage to speak about the significance of the Campbell Cup and share their favorite memories of the game.
“My favorite memory was getting ready in the locker room with the whole grade,” said Ellie Noto (SHP ’22). “We did each other’s hair and put on a ton of eye black. I remember Ava Shenk (SHP ’22) brought her speaker and we listened to “Roses” by the Chainsmokers. It was epic.”
While Menlo School cinched the win last year and currently has the Campbell Cup trophy in its possession, the SHS team hopes to win it back for the 20th anniversary event this Tuesday, May 24th. The game is at 3:30 p.m. at SHS on Gavello Field.