Dartmouth's freshman football team came within eight seconds and a hand of a 7-0 victory over Harvard yesterday before the Yardlings pulled out an 3-7 victory in the most exciting football game on Soldiers' Field this year.
The hand belonged to Crimson line-backer Joe Donnelly, and he barely god it in front of a fourth-down Dartmouth punt with eight seconds left and the ball on the Indians' 25.
The blocked kick rolled back to the Dartmouth five, where Crimson end Mantague Demment swiped at it with one hand. He knocked it into the end zone, then fell on it for a Harvard touchdown.
Time had run out, but Harvard still had its conversion attempt coming. Disdaining a kick that would have tied the game, quarterback Ben Smith dropped back and whipped a high pass to Carter Lord, cutting over the middle from his right end position. Lord leaped and grabbed it between three Dartmouth defenders and Harvard had won, 3-7.
Dartmouth controlled the ball and stopped the Crimson ground attack through most of the game, but the Indians' only score, like Harvard's, came on a bad break on a kick.
Earlier in the same fourth quarter, a center soared over Harvard punter Mike Hallock's head and on into the end zone. Hallock ran it out to the three, but one play later Bob Thomas swept left end to score for Dartmouth. Paul Kiely converted.
Trailing by a touchdown, Harvard mounted its only sustained offensive drive after Dick Manchester returned a punt to the Dartmouth 43.
Smith hit Lord for 15 yards and an interference penalty gave Harvard a first down at the Indians' 13-yard line.
But four passes went incomplete and Harvard had to give up the ball, with a minute left. Three plays later Donnelly charged through to block the punt and put Harvard back in the game.