Harvard's victory over Pennsylvania on Saturday reflects small credit on the team. The Pennsylvania eleven was composed of light and inexperienced men, and Harvard should have made a much larger score. That the team did not make a better showing was due principally to the inexcusable fumbling and carelessness and the absence of team play. Superior weight and spirited playing enabled Harvard to carry the Pennsylvania team before it, but against a heavier team Harvard would have made the worst showing of the season.
The extent of the fumbling and carelessness may be seen from the fact that though the Pennsylvania team was able to hold Harvard for downs only once, it secured the ball five times on fumbles, three times for holding and once for off-side play. Harvard, too, gained through careless playing, securing the ball four times on fumbles, and in addition gaining 40 yards in all through off-side play and interference. In kicking, Pennsylvania outclassed Harvard, for though Putnam kicked nearly as well as Reynolds. Harvard's ends were so slow in getting down the field that Pennsylvania ran back kicks from 5 to 20 yards each time. Moreover, Harvard formed no interference for running back punts and kickoffs, although the need of this had been constantly impressed on the men. Contrary to expectations, Harvard proved stronger in line plays than those around end. The excellent interference which resulted in the long end runs in the Brown and Carlisle games, was entirely lacking and what gains were made around end were due to the individual work of the runner and the interference and assistance given after the runner had passed the line. In line plays the men were somewhat slow in starting, but the team worked well together, helped the runner along and when once under way, did some effective rushing. On the defense the linemen were remarkably successful in breaking up the interference on Pennsylvania's trick plays and formations, while the ends tackled the runners without gain. In several instances, however, the defense was completely demoralized merely by the speed and dash of Pennsylvania's weak offense. This was the case during the first ten minutes of the game and the last five minutes of both halves. The line was unsteady when Harvard had the ball and frequently started before it was passed, which resulted in much confusion. In spite of this fumbling and carelessness, the entire team played with a spirit and dash which it had not shown in previous games.
Pennsylvania ran off the plays with great speed and was quick to take advantage of Harvard's mistakes. The team was not well enough drilled to make effective the new formations which it tried.
Individually Graydon, Cutts and Bowditch alone played with their usual effectiveness. Graydon started promptly, hit the line hard and kept his feet well. He ran cleverly and picked openings to advantage. On the defense he backed up the line and tackled low. Cutts had no difficulty in opening holes when called upon, and carried the ball with strength and intelligence. He was quicker in starting and kept his feet longer than usually. He interfered in good style. Bowditch played a brilliant game in all but one particular. He was slow in getting down the field on kicks, but though he did not tackle the player who caught the ball, succeeded in turning him in. Bowditch was very valuable in helping the runner along, and succeeded in adding materially to the ground gained. Campbell was also slow in getting down on kicks, and did not get into the plays as actively as did Bowditch.
Blagden was not able to gain much ground in carrying the ball, but succeeded in opening good holes. A great fault in his playing was a failure to continue blocking his opponent after making the first charge Lee played a steady and fairly r liable game, but did not take sufficient care in charging Teas. Sargent's passing showed improvement and his playing on both offense and defense showed strength and speed. Barnard opened large holes but hid not handle his opponent effectively. He frequently allowed Mitchell to interfere with the centre and quarterback, and though this resulted in penalties for interference, it irritated both Sargent and Marshall and disorganized the interference. Although Lawrence did not play long enough to show his endurance, he did some fast defensive work. Unsteadiness on the offense was his worst fault. Burgess hesitated to get into the plays, but did not allow gains around his end. Marshall ran the team very sensibly, although slow in getting the plays off. His fumbling was costly and inexcusable. He passed the ball well until the end of the second half when an injury to his neck made him erratic. Baldwin, who took his place, did not use the best of judgment and was a trifle unsteady. Putnam played the worst game he has done this season in many ways, yet his running with the ball was brilliant. It is doubtful whether this would have been so successful against a fairly capable team. He failed entirely to assist the other backs on end runs and showed poor judgment in leaving the interference. Mifflin did not show up well in the short time he played. Ristine did some brilliant running, especially in his 40 yard run, when he shook off three tacklers; but he did not follow his interference closely enough, relying on his own efforts. He did not interfere successfully for the other runners. Jones, who took Ristine's place, was unsteady at first, but steadied down later and was effective for short gains.
The men were all in good condition after the game, no one being seriously injured.
THE GAME IN DETAIL.
Harvard won the toss and chose the north goal, with a slight wind in its favor. Putnam returned the kick-off to the middle of the field. Pennsylvania gained 5 yards, but lost the ball on a fumble. Putnam was thrown back for a loss and on the next play fell back to punt. He fumbled the pass and Pennsylvania secured the ball. Pennsylvania gained 5 yards through tackle plays and 10 yards more on offside play. A quarterback kick did not succeed and after a short gain through the line Putnam punted to mid-field, Howard running the kick back 5 yards. Failing to gain through the line, Pennsylvania punted to the 10 yard line. Putnam returning it 30 yards on the next play. Again Pennsylvania could not gain and punted to the 4 yard line where Putnam caught the ball, instead of letting it roll over. Putnam punted down the field to Pennsylvania's 45 yard line. Pennsylvania gained 10 yards on a double pass, but was then held and forced to punt. Putnam got the ball, but fumbled it on the 10 yard line. Harvard immediately regained it on a fumble and by steady gains through the line, using Cutts and Graydon alternately, and occasionally Ristine or Putnam, scored a touchdown without once losing the ball. Graydon carried the ball over and Cutts kicked goal.
Barnard got the next kick-off on the 18 yard line and good gains by Ristine and Putnam advanced the ball to the middle of the field. Here Graydon broke through the line and made 30 yards, helped along by the entire team. Cutts made a short gain and then Putnam ran around right end for 10 yards. Short gains resulted in the second touchdown, Graydon carrying the ball over. Cutts kicked goal.
Marshall ran the next kick-off back 15 yards. Ristine gained 10 yards and Putnam 5 more, but Harvard then lost the ball for holding. Failing to gain through the line Pennsylvania kicked to Marshall who fumbled it on the 20 yard line. Mitchell recovered the ball and scored Pennsylvania's touchdown. Davidson kicked goal.
Harvard kicked off to Davidson, who ran the kick back 15 yards. Again Pennsylvania could not gain and was forced to punt. Marshall caught the kick on Harvard's 50-yard line. From this point, by gains through the line chiefly by Putnam and Graydon, Harvard secured another touchdown, Graydon carrying the ball over. Cutts failed to kick an easy goal.
Graydon ran back the next kick-off 25 yards to the 40 yard line. Pennsylvania held and Putnam punted to Marshall who advanced the ball 18 yards. On the second play Ristine ran 45 yards to the 5 yard line whence Putnam carried it over in two plays. The punt-out was not caught.
Ristine gained 15 yards on the next kick-off. Putnam then kicked only 15 yards and Dale advanced the ball 28 yards. Pennsylvania was unable to gain and Harvard secured the ball on downs on its 12 yard line. Time was then called.
Harvard kicked off to Mitchell who advanced the ball 15 yards. Pennsylvania failed to gain and Harvard secured the ball on a quarterback kick. Ristine gained 5 yards and Harvard then was given 5 yards twice in succession for interference. The ball was on the 25 yard line and Pennsylvania here held Harvard for downs, through a fumble by Putnam. Pennsylvania could not gain and punted to the 50 yard line. Jones took Ristine's place. Tackle plays and penalties for onside brought the ball to the 15 yard line where Jones fumbled it. Harvard regained the ball on a fumble and in two plays Graydon carried it over. Cutts kicked the goal.
Pennsylvania kicked off to the 10 yard line to Bowditch, who ran the kick back 27 yards. Short end runs by Jones and Putnam and gains through the line by Blagden and Graydon, coupled with 10 yards for off-side play, resulted in another touchdown, Graydon carrying the ball over. Putnam failed on the punt-out.
Harvard got the next kick-off on the 10 yard line, and from this point rushed the ball 85 yards without losing it. Meanwhile Cutts had been replaced by Lawrence, Putnam by Mifflin and Bowditch by Burgess. On the 15 yard line Harvard fumbled and Pennsylvania secured the ball. Pennsylvania punted to the middle of the field, but Harvard lost the ball on an off-side play, Baldwin catching Mifflin's punt. Burgess let Pennsylvania gain 7 yards on a double pass around his end. A quarterback kick brought the ball to the 25 yard line. Pennsylvania gained 8 yards and then tried for a goal from the field. The kick was blocked, Harvard getting the ball on the 30 yard line. Pennsylvania got the ball for holding and after trying to gain through the line, punted over the goal line. Mifflin kicked to the middle of the field and Pennsylvania ran the kick back 15 yards. Pennsylvania next tried a quarterback kick but Baldwin got the ball on the 10 yard line. Mifflin punted to the 35 yard line. Failing to gain through the line, Townsend fell back for a fake kick, but Burgess tackled him and Harvard got the ball on downs. A few line plays advanced the ball to Harvard's 50 yard line where time was called.