The favorites lived up to the hype for the most part in Ivy League football action this past weekend, as Penn and Princeton earned wins in league contests against Dartmouth and Columbia, respectively. The Ancient Eight teams that stepped outside the conference gained momentum heading into next week’s games, as three-of-four Ivy teams took home victories against non-league foes.
Penn 17, Dartmouth 10
The Quakers (2-1, 1-0 Ivy) deftly defended home-field advantage when they faced the Green on Franklin Field in Philadelphia on Saturday, winning 17-10. Dartmouth (0-3, 0-1) didn’t break into the end zone until quarterback Mike Fritz threw for a touchdown with 37 seconds left in the game. The Green attempted an on-sides kickoff in a last-ditch attempt to rally, but the Quakers recovered the kick and sealed the win. Fritz threw for 225 yards in the loss, while Penn’s signal-caller, Robert Irvin, passed for 227 yards and two touchdowns. Cornerback Tyson Maugle had two interceptions for the Quakers, as well as a pass break-up in the end zone and four tackles en route to earning Ivy League Defensive Player of the Week honors.
Princeton 19, Columbia 6
After starting the season 2-0 against non-league opponents, the Lions (2-1, 0-1) couldn’t stretch the winning streak into conference play as they fell to the Tigers, 19-6, on their home field. Running back R.C. Lagomarsino had 98 yards on the ground and a touchdown for Princeton (3-0, 1-0), which has repeated its 3-0 start from the 2005 campaign. Columbia only mustered 23 rushing yards in head coach Norries Wilson’s first loss at the helm for the Lions. Wilson keyed in on Columbia’s inability to convert a single third or fourth down in 14 attempts as a reason for the defeat.
Rhode Island 28, Brown 21[img_assist|nid=18731|title=Tangled up in blue.|desc=Yale running back Mike McLeod (28) tries to break free from junior defensive back Colin Nash during the Red’s 21-9 loss the Bulldogs on Sept. 23. (Robert Bonow / Sun Photo Editor)|link=popup|align=right|width=70|height=100]
The Bears (1-2, 0-1) ran out of clock in an attempted comeback against the Rams (2-2, 0-1 Atlantic 10), surrendering the Governor’s Cup to their cross-city rival in Providence, R.I., on Saturday in a 28-21 loss. Rhode Island led, 28-7, at the half, but quarterback Joe DiGiacomo connected on touchdown passes of 11 and 61 yards to Paul Raymond to pull within a touchdown. DiGiacomo ended the game with 244 passing yards, connecting on 17-of-34 passes, while Raymond had four receptions for 90 yards in the defeat. Wide receiver Buddy Farnham had five catches for a total of 64 yards and a 19-yard punt return in the loss for Brown, a performance that earned him Ivy League Rookie of the Week accolades.
Harvard 35, Lehigh 33
The Crimson (3-0, 1-0) pulled off the comeback of the weekend, rallying from 17 points down in the first half for a 35-33 win over the Mountain Hawks (1-3, 0-0 Patriot League) in Bethlehem, Pa., for its seventh-consecutive win. After making a surprise start at quarterback for Harvard despite suffering a knee injury in the first game of the season, Chris Pizzotti found Matt Luft for a touchdown to cut Lehigh’s lead to 10. Then, Chris Sanders connected with Corey Mazza on a wide-receiver option for a 32-yard touchdown pass to cut the margin to three points. Tailback Clifton Dawson also came up big for the Crimson, rushing for 94 yards and three touchdowns — good enough to move into a third-place tie on the Ivy League’s all-time list for career rushing touchdowns with 49.
Yale 37, Lafayette 34
Yale (2-1, 1-0) accumulated a 16-point lead going into the fourth quarter against Lafayette (2-3, 1-0 Patriot) and had to fend off a rally by the Leopards to secure a 37-34 victory in Easton, Pa., on Saturday. The Bulldogs’ defense was its best offense in the first half, causing four Lafayette turnovers. Running back Mike McLeod, who was named the Ivy League’s Offensive Player of the Week, did the damage on offense, rushing for 172 yards and three second-half touchdowns. Wide receiver Ashley Wright also played a substantial role in the win, catching four passes for 151 yards, including a 63-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Matt Polhemus in the second quarter. The Leopards ran for two touchdowns to close the gap to three points, but McLeod answered with a 45-yard scramble to the end zone to widen the gap. Adam Gill scored a final touchdown for Lafayette with 30 seconds left, but it wasn’t enough.