It was an exciting, invigorating, aggressive game of football staged by Harvard and Dartmouth at the Stadium on Saturday, but the outcome was the same as it's been for the past five years--and it leads one to believe that Harvard gridiron victories over the boys in Green rank right up there with turmoil in the Middle East and Adlai Stevenson concession speeches for things we can take for granted.
Three second-half touchdowns by the Crimson turned a 7-3 halftime deficit into a 24-19 triumph, as Harvard quarterback Larry Brown, the architect of an offensive metamorphosis over which Ovid himself would have drooled, led the gridders to their first Ivy League win of the season.
"It all comes down to the single fact that I was horrible in the first half, and I'm being extremely kind to myself," Brown said afterwards.
"But when I went in the locker room at halftime everyone was behind me, saying 'Come on now, pick it up.' It was just a matter of getting the ball down and getting my concentration together," he added.
So Brown concentrated while the Crimson offense went from a sprint-out type of attack to sets which utilized more play pass action. The results were downright awesome.
In addition to the second half exploits of Brown, Ralph Polillio strengthened his bid for an all-Ivy berth with another out-standing performance. The Stoughton Express rushed for 95 yards and two touchdowns on the day, adding to his team-leading figures in both those categories.
Harvard went 80 yards in 13 plays and six minutes to open the second half and assume a 10-7 lead. Hard running by fullback Matt Granger, and Brown's prodigal pass accuracy, drove the ball into Dartmouth territory.
With the ball on the Dartmouth 21, Granger went off right guard for 11 yards and fumbled at the ten. Luckily, tackle Mike Durgin was there to wrestle the ball away in the pile-up, and the drive still breathed.
A seven-yard sackof Brown by Dartmouth's superb linebacker Jeff Hickey set up a third-and-goalsituation from the 17. Brown play-faked and hit tight end Paul Sablock on a quick slant at the three, who proceeded to piggy-back two Dartmouth defenders into the end zone for the score.
The Harvard defense, realizing that its turnover-forcing efforts of the first half (Dartmouth coughed up the ball three times) would not go unrewarded, gave the ball back to the offense two and a half minutes later at their own 26, and watched the born-again unit make believers out of everyone.
Brown's aerial show continued. He lauched one for 36 yards down the sideline to wide receiver Rich Horner. Two plays later, his fastball down the middle found John MacLeod at the Dartmouth 20 for an 18-yard gain.
A holding penalty on the Woodsmen eventually moved the ball to the eight-yard Polillio took a quick hitter off right tackle past everyone for the tally that put Harvard up 17-7.
Dartmouth did its best to jettison the shackles of the Crimson's gridiron curse over them, as classy OB Buddy Teevens drove the Woodsmen 67 yards for a touchdown midway through the final quarter. Halfback Jeff Dufresne took ball on eight of the 11 plays, finally scooting off tackle from the one to make it 17-13.
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