There were no smiles after Harvard's, 31-31, debacle at the Stadium Saturday.
Darmouth players looked depressed. Harvard looked suicidal.
Who could be satisfied with a game Harvard could've won, should've won, but didn't?
Forget the botched 27-yard gimme kick. That was just terrible football. It sucked. 'Nuff said.
What pained Harvard fans--and Dartmouth fans, as well--was the inability of either team to take a lead and keep it. The Crimson's glory quickly turned into the Big Green's
As Harvard finally emerged from its offensive shell on a stirring drive in the beginning of the fourth, Dartmouth battled right back to knot the game.
It was a tie. Plain and simple.
But no matter how frustrating the whole affair was, no one can deny that it was an exciting game. It was a spectacular show, a brilliant display by two young and immensely talented quarterbacks.
Two sophomores, Harvard's Mike Giardi and Dartmouth's Jay Fiedler, played with the grit, determination and, above all, talent of wily veterans, true leaders.
Giardi In Control
In the second quarter, the Harvard offense looked as strong as it has all year. Drive after drive, Harvard took control of the ground--and occasionally the air--to rack up 21 points in the Crimson's most fluid and prolific stretch this season.
"Offensively, that was our stretch," Giardi said. "We had it all straightened out. It worked well."
Indeed, Giardi showed the poise, field vision, and, above all, command of the so-called multiflex that has made him Harvard football's saviour.
On third-and-11 with the ball on the Dartmouth 44, the Big Green swept in on Giardi. The Mather sophomore dropped back, ducked underneath Dartmouth's Hunter Bruckner, and rolled right. Pursued by two defenders, Giardi spotted Hirsch at the 10-yard line and connected with a strong throw.
Two downs later, Giardi, on an option, danced through the Dartmouth line and broke into the left side for the TD.