Last year in the fourth period of the Yale game, the score was tied at 6-6 and it was snowing. This year in the fourth period the score was also deadlocked, 0-0, and it was raining. In both cases a threatening Yale team drove down the field, only to fail on an attemtped field goal. And a fighting Harvard eleven took the ball on its own 20-yard line and marched to a touchdown and the Big Three Title.
For three periods on Saturday, as 62,000 braved the elements, and countless thousands listened by the fireside, rain, that great leveler of unequal teams, made an underdog Bulldog into a very stubborn mutt indeed. Up to the middle of that last canto, the Elis, led by their great Sophomore quarterback, Ray Anderson, had piled up eight first downs, while the Crimson cohorts had been able to negotiate only three.
A great exhibition of punting by Yale end John Miller and Harvard's Austie Harding and Frank Foley has kept the session seesawing back and forth. Early in the second period the Harlowmen had their best chance to score, when Harding tossed a 20-yard aerial to Captain Bob Green, who lateralled to Torb Macdonald, advancing the pigskin to the enemy 17-yard stripe. An interception by Anderson foiled the threat.
Yale had two real threats. Once when their ace runner Al Wilson broke away from all but Macdonald to make a first down on the Crimson 37-yard stripe, and again in the early part of the fourth period when a succession of runs and Anderson-Snavely passes put the pellet on Harvard's 21. On both occasions the Crimson rose and held, the second threat ending when Don Daughters, playing his top game of the year, smothered Anderson before he could get off on an end-zone heave.
Then, with the ball on Harvard's 21-yard line, third down and nine to go, tailback Foley ordered the first of the bag of tricks which the elements had necessitated keeping tied up to that point. He faked a kick, drew the whole Eli line in, and then shot a diagonal pass to Green, who was finally pulled down on the 40. A play later and "Flash" Macdonald was off on a tackle slant. Picking up speed despite the field, he went deep into enemy territory and was finally forced out on the ten-yard line.
After a one-yard rush, Foley dropped back and passed to the end-zone to Macdonald, draped among two Elis. Enemy baseball captain Collins seemed to have the ball, as all went down, but somehow Macdonald had wrung it from him, and up went the referee's arms. The rain was coming down the hardest of all afternoon, but reliable Chief Boston went in and booted the extra point high and far. The game, to all intents and purposes, was over, although another succession of Anderson-Snavely passes provided one last flurry. The fray ended with Harvard freezing the ball by double and triple shifts.
Statistics show 129 yards by rushing for Yale to 72 by Harvard. The way Yale was able to gain through the line was discouraging; but the day was made to order for the lumbering Eli offense. The Pondmen were really the "pond-men." The field, first damp, became progressively soggy and saturated. The crowd was wet throughout.
The Crimson dressing-room was a scene of restrained jubilation. All the Harvard players had great respect for the last fight of their opponents. The Seniors took off their pada for the last time with mingled feelings. Coach Harlow commented "Magnificent!" on Yale, and not so magnificent on some over-efficient managers who had lost his coat and hat.
"Ducky" Pond was naturally disappointed. He went overboard on the "Larry Kelley" ability of Macdonald on the last catch, and on Cliff Wilson and Bob Green. "Better than Gates," be said. "That Wilson is the best blocking back I have seen."
Four of his Yale players left the field with doctors during the hard-fought encounter, tackle Brooks, end Dyess, and halfbacks Wilson and Burr, but all appeared okay in the dressing-room. Yale played into the third quarter without a single substitution.
How much of a moral victory a 0-0 tie would have been was evident at the close of the half, when the Yale stands accorded their team a great ovation, while the Harvard stands just sat and shivered.
Captain Green, Cliff Wilson, Don Daughters, Ken Booth, Austie Harding, Frank Foley, Dave Glueck, Nick Mellen, Tim Russell, Chief Boston, Mike Cohen, Ben Smith, Win Jameson, Jim Fearon and Bob Burnett played their last game for Harvard. They will meet tomorrow with Joe Gardella, Torb Macdonald, Tom Healey, Bill Coleman, Mose Hallett and don Lowry, the other lettermen, to elect next year's captain