October 31, 2003

Red Visits Tigers in Ivy Game

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The last time the football team played a road game, it was 1-0, looking to add its first Ivy League win of the season to its record, when it faced Yale Sept. 27 in New Haven. Five weeks later, the Red is still in search of its first conference win and will bring that quest to Princeton, N.J. tomorrow afternoon for a 1 p.m. game against the Tigers.

Cornell has been banged up quite a bit of late and will depend on strong performances from some players who have been forced to step up.

The Red enters the game following last weekend’s 21-7 loss to Brown. Cornell struggled with its execution on the defensive end, allowing the Bears to compile 314 yards of total offense. Running back Nick Hartigan accounted for 203 of those yards, as he proved himself as the premier ground weapon in the league.

Princeton enters the game following a tough 43-40 overtime loss at Harvard last weekend. After holding a lead for much of the game, Princeton allowed the Crimson to tie late in the fourth quarter. After kicker Derek Javarone kicked a 36-yard field goal to give the Tigers the lead, Harvard took possession and scored the game-winning touchdown when quarterback Garrett Schires found Rodney Byrnes in the back of the end zone.

The loss came on the heels of the Tigers’ 34-14 win at Brown a week before. In that contest, Clinton Wu caught an Ivy League record 99-yard touchdown pass.

“To me, these last two weeks, they’ve looked like the team from last year,” said Cornell head coach Tim Pendergast. “What they’ve done I think is they’ve grown over the course of the season, and just comparing them to last year, now they’re starting to look like the team from last year.”

Last season, the Tigers beat Cornell, 32-25, in overtime at Schoellkopf Field. The loss broke the Red’s three-game winning streak over Princeton. The game-winning strike came when quarterback Matt Verbit connected with Blair Morrison on an 11-yard touchdown pass. The Red failed to capitalize on its overtime possession, as the Tigers batted away two potential touchdown passes during the Red’s drive.

Tomorrow, Cornell will be forced to contend with the loss of junior offensive tackle David Archer, who was injured in last week’s game.

“Both [senior] Jason Stadnik and [junior] Tim Doherty will play for him, as they did in the half of a game this week,” said Pendergast.

Archer adds to an already lengthy list of injured Cornell players. Other notable injuries involve senior quarterback Mick Razzano, who will be a game-time decision, as he rests his strained abdominal muscle. In addition, senior wide receiver Chad Nice and sophomore tailback Josh Johnston are also likely out for tomorrow’s game.

“Guys that are six weeks into the season, they are banged up,” Pendergast said. “The number of guys that we have who are out not just banged up disturbs me.”

Archived article by Owen Bochner

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