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Yardling Gridders Trounce Dartmouth

Offense Grinds for 312 Yards


The Harvard freshman football team took an important first step toward an Ivy title yesterday, destroying Dartmouth, 20-7, behind an offense that amassed 312 total yards and a defense which yielded only 10 first downs all afternoon.

The Yardling touchdowns came from drives of 85,80, and 60 yards and were all directed by quarterback Mike Lynch, who passed for two touchdowns and kicked two PATs.

Harvard frustrated the Big Green's offense all day, as Dartmouth came into scoring position just twice. Their only score occured with 30 seconds remaining in the first half, culminating a 40 yard drive that was launched by a recovery of Crimson tumble. Dartmouth quarterback Mike Brait, after realizing the futility of trying to score through the Yardling line, called a play-action-pass on fourth down from the one and hit half-back Bruce Bell perfectly in the corner of the end zone.

Harvard's offense started sensationally with a seemingly easy 85-yard scoring drive during their first possession of the game. Halfway into the first period, quarterback Lynch his split end Fran Cronin on a six-yard corner pass for the Yardlings' first touchdown. Lynch's PAT kick made the score 7-0.

However, Dartmouth readjusted its defense to shut off the Yardlings' outside running game which accounted for most of Harvard's yardage on the initial drive. As a result, the Yardlings were unable to mount a sustained drive until the second half, when they made a major adjustment to the Big Green's altered defense.

"Their adjustments opened up the middle for us, so we decided to run (fullback) Neil Miller up the middle more; we planned to use him primarily as a blocker, but his running really loosened up the Dartmouth defense for us in the second half," freshman head coach Chet O'Neill explained.

The second Crimson touchdown was a 29-yard fourth down aerial strike from Lynch to tight end Walt Herbert halfway through the third period, capping an 80 yard march. Lynch converted again, putting Harvard ahead 14-7.

Harvard's passing game continued to be reliable against Dartmouth as Lynch, receiving flawless protection from his offensive line, consistently hit Herbert and split end Cronin in key situations.

The final Harvard scoring drive began after Yardling defensive end Bill O'Neill blind-sided Dartmouth quarterback Blait and forced a fumble which Pete Me, the other Crimson end, recovered at Harvard's own 40-yard line.

The Yardlings proved the effectiveness of coach O'Neill's second half strategy as fullback Miller rumbled through gaping holes and plunged into the end zone on the third play of the fourth quarter from the four. The touchdown, making the tally Harvard 20. Dartmouth 7, was the last of the game as Lynch's PAT attempt was not good due to a low center snap.

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