November 15, 2005

Brown Clinches Share of Ivy Championship

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Despite winning its second Ivy League game in a row, the Cornell football team will fall short of a championship this season, as the squad was mathematically eliminated on Saturday. However, with only one game left to play, the league winner is still very much in question, as four teams still vying for the top spot.

Brown has already clinched a share of the title and could wrap up sole possession with a win over Columbia next weekend. But, Princeton, Harvard, and Yale each sit one game out of first place. While there is still much to be decided, here is a recap of what happened around the Ivies last weekend.

Brown 24, Dartmouth 14

Brown senior tailback Nick Hartigan ran for 192 yards and a pair of touchdowns, as the Bears held off Dartmouth, 24-14, in Providence, R.I. The win clinched a share of the league championship for Brown (8-1, 5-1 Ivy).

Hartigan, a Walter Payton Award finalist, put his team on the scoreboard with 1:24 to play in the first quarter with a 4-yard touchdown run.

However, Dartmouth (2-7, 1-5) refused to go down without a fight. The Green tied the game early in the second quarter – following a Brown fumble deep in its own territory – on a 7-yard pass from Joshua Cohen to Ryan Fuselier. The duo hooked up again late in the third quarter, this time for a 12-yard touchdown to put the Green ahead 14-10.

Unfortunately for Dartmouth, Hartigan proved to be too much on the ground, scoring the game-winning touchdown on a 4-yard plunge with 11:47 remaining. The Brown defense added an insurance score late in the game, as Greg Burlin recovered a Cohen fumble in the Dartmouth end zone.

Yale 21, Princeton 14

Starting the day in a tie atop the league standings, Princeton jumped out to a 14-0 lead by the halftime break. Tigers quarterback Jeff Terrell was responsible for both of the touchdowns through the air – on a 28-yard pass to Derek Davis and a 32-yarder to Brian Brigham.

However, despite throwing for a career-high 230 yards, Terrell was picked off five times, and Yale scored two touchdowns in 27 seconds late in the fourth quarter to pull off the upset, 21-14.

Yale’s first scoring drive of the game was set up by an interception by Nick Solakian, and capped off by a 1-yard touchdown run by Mike McLeod late in the third quarter. However, Princeton (6-3, 4-2) held the Bulldogs (4-5, 4-2) scoreless for the next 15 minutes of play, setting up the late-game heroics.

With 1:14 remaining, Yale quarterback Jeff Mroz threw a 10-yard touchdown pass to Todd Feiereisen to tie the score at 14. On Princeton’s first play from scrimmage on the subsequent drive, Brendan Sponheimer forced a fumble, which was recovered and returned to the Tigers’ 1-yard line by Bobby Abare. With just 47 seconds left on the clock, Mroz took full advantage of the opportunity, putting his team on top with a 1-yard touchdown run.

Harvard 29, Penn 3

After an opening possession field goal by Penn kicker Derek Zoch, Harvard dominated the Quakers for the remainder of the afternoon, putting together five unanswered scoring drives for a 29-3 victory in Cambridge, Mass.

Quarterback Liam O’Hagan hooked up with fullback Kelly Widman on the first three touchdowns, giving the Crimson (6-3, 4-2) an 18-3 lead with 3:48 left in the second quarter. O’Hagan added another score before the half on a 12-yard scamper, as the sophomore ran for 61 yards in addition to throwing for 293.

Harvard outgained the Quakers 469-239, as the Crimson defense forced three turnovers and held Penn (5-4, 3-3) to only 59 yards rushing on 27 carries. In contrast, Harvard tailback Clifton Dawson ran the ball 19 times for 105 yards.

Archived article by Bryan Pepper
Sun Assistant Sports Editor