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Harvard has been playing Holy Croseainen before the days of Perey Houghton, but the game has never become a traditional contest as might be expected after so many years. The series has produced a number of interesting battles, but each school consider other games on its schedule more important.
It took ten games before the Crusaders were able to score their first win over the Crimson, but since then, 1925, the series has been about even. At no time bas Harvard found the series very easy, although the varsity has won all four contests since the series was resumed in 1946.
In the late 20's and early 30's the Holy Cross game immediately preceded the Yale game, but it was no breather as proved by the 27 to 0 win that Crusaders scored in 1930. In 1929, Coach Arnold Horween played his second team against Holy Cress but was compelled to send in his regulars after an over first half. The Crimson scored in the third and fourth quarters to win, 12 to 6.
Benching the Stars
Coach Eddie Casey faced a similar problem in 1932. He benched all his regular starting backfield except his quarterback and then watched his offense bog down. Holy Cross was within the Crimson ten yard line three times but was unable to score. Finally Harvard made good its one scoring opportunity in the fourth quarter to win, 7 to 0.
The series has had its low-scoring moments. For a total of ten consecutive periods through the first half of the 1922 game, neither side made a touchdown.
The 24-game series started off in 1904 when a strong Crimson eleven which won seven games while only dropping two and tying another--conquered the Crusaders, 28 to 5, on Soldiers Field.
Charley Brickley was the star of the 1912 victory, scoring two touchdowns for Haughton. He also got a goal with a drop kick in the first period and a placekick in the second.
In the 47 to 7 slaughter the following year, Eddie Mahan led his team to the win after Holy Cross had made the first score. Mahan made a 40-yard drop kick in the first half while the Crimson scored 31 points.
Low Point for Crimson
The 1926 game was a low point for Harvard. Horween had just taken over as coach and was on his way to a losing season of three wins and five defeats. After making two touchdowns in the first half, Horween's team saw its defense collapse. The Crusaders went ahead 19 to 14 and held the lead. In the final quarter, the Crimson fumbled on the one-yard line to lose a chance to salvage the game.
Two years later the series produced its only tie, 0 to 0, when the Holy Cross defense stopped the Crimson on the one-yard line in the closing minutes of the contest. A 35-yard pass gave Harvard a first down on the Crusader five; three plays took the team down to within a yard of a score. A final line buck failed, and Holy Cross took over on its half-yard line.
This afternoon the Crimson once again faces Dr. Eddie Anderson, the coach who handed them three successive defeats in 1933, '34, and '35. The '33 game was won by the powerful Crusader defense which prevented the tricky Harvard offense from working properly. Holy Cross dominated the play of the game, but they had to come from behind to win, 10 to 7.
In '34 the Harvard squad succumbed to an effective passing attack by the Crusaders, 26 to 6. All four of their touchdowns resulted from passes. The only consolation for the Crimson was that they had surprised the Crusader at the start of the game and had made the Initial score.
Harvard faced Holy Cross for the last time until after the war in 1936. The Crimson in a losing season--played over its head and stopped Anderson's team repeatedly deep in Harvard territory, but the Crusaders were able to score twice and win, 13 to 0.
Resumed After War
When the series resumed in 1946 Harvard scored a close 13 to 6 victory. The team overcame the Crusaders' decided superiority in the line and was able to hold in check the Holy Cross ground attack.
In '47 it was the Crimson line play which again made the difference as Harvard scored a one touchdown win. Valpey put his trieky plays to good advantage against the Crusaders in 1948. With Hal Moffle and Charlie Roche starring, the Crimson won its second game of the ex-Michigan coach's first season.
Last year the win over the Crusaders was engineered primarlly because of the slowness of the Holy Cross linemen. The Crimson threw only 11 passes and relied on ground plays to bring it the only pleasant moment of the long fall.
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