Our eleven played the first championship game of the season at Princeton Saturday, and were defeated by the Jersey men by a score of 26 points to 7. The weather was everything that could be desired and the grounds were in first rate condition at the time play was called. Harvard won the toss and chose the west side of the field, from which a light wind was blowing. From the kick-off advantage seemed to turn in Harvard's favor and soon Cowling made a try-at-goal from a fair catch. The kick was extremely difficult and the ball passed a few feet outside the posts. Shortly after another trial was made but the ball rebounded from a Princeton rusher and was soon at the foot of our posts. In a maul-in-goal which followed, Kimball of Princeton secured the ball and scored a touch down from which Moffat kicked an easy goal. The ball was brought out and Harvard went to work in earnest so that in a very short time the ball was forced to Princeton's ground. The ball was passed back to Cowling and he kicked a very pretty goal from the field. From the next kick-off the ball again approached Princeton's line, and from a fumble by Baker Kendall scored a touchdown for Harvard, but the try-for-goal was a failure. The inning closed with the score 7 to 6 in Harvard's favor, exactly the same as the final score last year, and Harvard began to feel victory near at hand. Moffat's famous kicking had not as yet been seen and so was not reckoned on, but the so and three quarters was nothing but a contest between the phenomenal kicking of this brilliant half-back and the dogged resistance of our eleven. Moreover the kicking won. Every time Moffat got within thirty yards of our poles his unerring kick sent the ball squarely over the bar, leaving no room for doubt either respecting the goal or the fairness of the kick. Our men start doff with a heavy rushing game and for a time steadily approached Princeton's goal, but the advantage only lasted while we held the ball ; when once Princeton secured it the lighting was changed to our territory forthwith. Moffat's first goal from the field was the turning point, being one of the finest points ever scored on a Harvard team. The next three goals were but a repetition of the first, being made in successive tries by a skill which seemed almost as sure as fate. Our men played pluckily, however, and a few minutes before the close a brilliant try from the field by Cowling almost gave us five points more. In the last three quarters the Princeton team played entirely for their captain, leaving it to him to gain every particle of advantage, while their duty seemed only to hold what he gained. Had our half-backs been surer, however, his long kicks might have been rendered fruitless, for the chief advantage he sought depended on fumbling by our backs. The only possible precaution to be secured against his wonderful kicking was either to keep the ball away from our ground or else never to let it pass from our hold.
As it is the result is naturally a very bitter disappointment for us, as the nature of the game was totally unexpected. Still the play of our team was by no means weak, and a little stronger tackling with surer catching would have materially effected the score. Moffat, Lamar and Kimball did nearly everything for the home team, while Adams, Kendall and Cowling worked hard for Harvard. The play of Appleton and Bonsal was also very noticeable. The teams were as follows :
Princeton-forwards, Finney, Travers, Bird, Harlan, Harris, Wanamaker and DeCamp ; quarter-back, Kimball ; half-backs, Moffat and Lamar, back, Bacon. Harvard-forwards, Adams, Kendall, Bonsal, Appleton, Cabot, Hartley and Gilman ; quarter-back, Kimball ; half-backs, Peabody and Austin ; back, Cowling. Umpire for Harvard, Mr. Littauer, '78, for Princeton, Mr. Look. Referee, Mr. Ray Tompkins, Yale, '84.
Princeton plays Yale next Saturday, and if grim determination to win can bring our late rivals success Yale, will have to look close for their laurels.