HANOVER, N.H.--The Harvard football team's 20-7 domination of the Big Green marked its second straight victory in Hanover, the first time in the modern history of the rivalry that has happened.
But behind the impressive statistics Harvard (4-3, 3-1 Ivy) laid down were a number of sub-plots that gave a little Halloween drama to this otherwise tepid rout.
Junior quarterback Brad Wilford, who came in as a halftime replacement for junior Rich Linden in the 20-14 win over Holy Cross, got one series in the first quarter.
Wilford entered with 2:41 remaining and misfired on his first pass. On third-and-10, he threw a fireball that sophomore receiver Josh Wilske caught out of fear for 12 yards and a first down.
Wilford had another first-down pass, a 13-yarder to junior running back Chris Menick, but he could not convert on a second third-down opportunity. The drive went 36 yards, so Wilford showed again that he can lead the team in a substitute role.
"I planned on doing it before the game--him getting a series in," Harvard Coach Tim Murphy said. "It's basically a reward, it's basically we have confidence in him, and if he was playing any other position, he'd be playing a lot."
Wilford completed 10-of-16 passes for 98 yards after subbing in for Linden against the Crusaders and sparked the offense.
But last week against Princeton, Linden started, and he responded to the benching with his best game of the season, 15-of-28 for 186 yards and two touchdowns. Wilford did not get any playing time.
Give and Take
For the second consecutive week, the Crimson won the turnover battle, collecting a fumble and forcing two late interceptions to seal the win.
Last week against Princeton, Harvard converted a third-quarter fumble into junior placekicker Mike Giampaolo's game-tying field goal, then junior defensive back Ben Green's interception snuffed out a potential game-winning drive late in the fourth quarter.
Saturday, Big Green punter Wayne Schlobohm took a snap in Dartmouth territory off one hop but could not get off a kick and carried left. The ball inexplicably popped out, Garo Yepremian style, with the nearest defender several yards away.
Junior linebacker Jeff Svicarovich recovered at the Dartmouth 32-yard line with 0:42 remaining in the first half, and Giampaolo kicked a 34-yard field goal for a 10-0 halftime lead.
Although the Crimson's prevent defense allowed Dartmouth 130 fourth-quarter yards, interceptions by junior safety Aron Natale and senior safety Derek Yankoff deep in Harvard territory stopped two Big Green drives.