With its League Championship hopes on the line, the Cornell sprint football team (2-2, 1-1 CSFL) delivered — thumping Princeton (0-4, 0-2) 24-6 at Frelinghuysen Field. Junior Trey Younger led the offense with 56 yards rushing, while the Red defense recovered four fumbles.
“Our offense did pretty well,” said senior wide receiver Chris Hood, who caught his first career touchdown for the Red. “We haven’t clicked on all cylinders yet, but we proved that we can pass.”
After a scoreless first quarter, sophomore Dean Coccaro and senior tri-captain Sunil Gupta helped pick apart the Tiger defense while racking up 18 points. Coccaro started the avalanche by scoring on a twenty-yard dash. Five minutes later, the team put together its most impressive drive of the season: a 12-play, 80 yard march that resulted in a second touchdown.
“That drive was the best one of the year,” Hood praised. “We needed to prove to ourselves that we could [sustain a drive]. And we did.”
The drive was capped by a 36-yard touchdown pass from Gupta to Hood.
“Sunil put it up perfectly, and I had the free safety beat, so I just had to run under it,” Hood described. “It seemed effortless in the replay.”
Junior Charlie Tam added another score on a 16-yard gallop, making the score 18-0. Freshman kicker Chris Garnic injured himself in practice and was not available for the game. Senior wide-receiver Scott Buszko missed two extra points in relief.
“The offensive line has made a huge improvement since the beginning of the season,” freshman Everett Hullverson related. “Our [success in] rushing showed that. All the guys have a good rapport but there is always some fine-tuning to do.”
With just under two minutes in the half, the Tigers sustained a drive of their own, scoring on a three-yard run. Unfortunately for the Tigers, that was the last time they would see the end zone as the Red defense applied the clamps for the entire second half.
Late in the third quarter, Gupta connected with freshman Michael Ormsby on an eight-yard slant, providing the finishing touches on the win.
“There were a lot of things about our performance that I’m happy about, but there were still some mistakes that just can’t happen in the next two games,” Gupta said.
“We made a few errors, but we’re getting better,” Hullverson added. “The biggest thing to improve is our blocking. We have running backs with speed and talent, we just need to block at the right time and at the right spot.”
“With the offense geared to our strengths, we work a lot better,” said Hood. “I think we can keep this up.”
The Red puts its one-game winning streak on the line next week against Penn in Philadelphia. The Quakers defeated Cornell 19-17 in Ithaca, three weeks ago.
Archived article by Sumeet Sarin