Harvard’s defensive unit forced four consecutive turnovers over a 6-and-a-half-minute span covering the second and third quarters this past Saturday (Oct. 14) to stifle the visiting Lafayette football team and come out victorious, 24-7. With the win, the 15th-ranked Crimson extend their unbeaten streak to 5-0 (2-0 Ivy).
Down 7-0 following a Leopard touchdown at 8:09 of the opening quarter, the Crimson marched back with three unanswered touchdowns and a field goal. Commencing the comeback was junior quarterback Chris Pizzotti and senior tight end Matt Farbotko. The duo capped an eight-play, 65-yard drive with a three-yard touchdown pass to earn the equalizer at 5:49 of the first quarter. Harvard then scored the lone goal in the second stanza after Corey Mazza ’07 reeled in a 19-yard delivery from Pizzotti to give the hosts a 14-7 edge (following the extra point).
For the remainder of the quarter, Lafayette struggled to string together anything resembling a drive as the Harvard defense effectively shut down the Leopards’ passing game with three straight interceptions. Meanwhile, on the ground, Harvard gave up just 83 rushing yards on the afternoon, while recording six sacks.
After halftime, Harvard – having forced and recovered a Lafayette fumble – quickly extended its lead to 17-7 following junior Matt Schindel’s 20-yard field goal just two minutes into the quarter. Senior running back Clifton Dawson later tacked on an insurance touchdown at 3:44 of the third with a 10-yard run for the eventual final. Dawson again paced his team with 148 rushing yards. Pizzotti, meanwhile, connected with nine different receivers on his way to completing 17 of 40 passes for 210 yards and an interception.
This Saturday (Oct. 21), Harvard will travel to the Garden State to take on No. 21 Princeton (5-0; 2-0 Ivy) in a showdown of the perfects. The Tigers are the only other remaining team in the Ivies still undefeated (and one of just five in all of Division I-AA). It’s been 84 years since these two squads have faced off with unblemished records this late in the season. Visit http://www.gocrimson.com for the latest scores and updates.
– Andrew Brooks