Harvard Wins The JV Game, 35-26

Yale celebrates a touchdown by Chris Morris. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Two Touchdowns for Morris 

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - An early 14-0 deficit proved too much for the Yale junior varsity football team to overcome, and the Bulldogs fell to Harvard 35-26 in The JV Game Friday afternoon at Clint Frank Field. Sophomore wide receiver Chris Morris had a pair of touchdown catches for the Bulldogs.

The Crimson's first score came on a busted trick play for Yale, as freshman tailback Javi Sosa's pass wound up in the hands of Harvard Aaron Thomas at the Yale 17 and he took it in for a touchdown at 5:42 of the first quarter. Ironically, the Yale drive had started with an interception by Yale sophomore outside linebacker Matt Battaglia.

Harvard scored again at the end of the quarter after denying Yale's attempt to convert a fourth-and-one at the Harvard 45. Colton Chapple's 24-yard pass to wide receiver Curtis Ross capped the drive and made it 14-0.

Yale began rallying with a 49-yard touchdown drive in the second quarter. Freshman tailback Taylor Stib got the drive off to a good start with a 12-yard run on the first play. Freshman quarterback Dez Duron had a key third-and-six conversion with an 18-yard toss to Morris, and that same duo capped the drive with a five-yard touchdown.

After Harvard scored another touchdown with 3:39 left in the half, the Bulldogs made the Crimson play for some failed trickery. Harvard tried a surprise onside kick, but the ball began rolling to a stop well shy of the necessary 10 yards before anyone from Harvard could touch it. Sophomore offensive lineman Jeff Fell fell on it to start the Yale offense off at the Harvard 34.

Yale's offense struck quickly after that. Stib took the handoff right and then pulled up to toss a pass down the sideline to a wide-open Morris for a 34-yard touchdown. The Bulldogs later got a 42-yard field goal from freshman placekicker Philippe Panico to make the halftime score 21-17 Harvard.

The Bulldog defense denied Harvard's fourth-down conversion attempt from the Yale 46 on the first drive of the third quarter, and the Yale offense then marched down field for another Panico field goal, this one a 33-yarder, to get within one. But two plays later, a 65-yard pass from Chapple to wide receiver Alex Sarkisian gave the Crimson some more breathing room, 28-20, with 8:05 left in the third.

Panico helped the Bulldogs gain a field position edge late in the quarter by racing back to grab a bad snap on a punt attempt, dodging the Crimson rush, and getting off a punt that pinned Harvard at its own 11. The Yale defense forced a three-and-out from there, and the Crimson punt set up the Yale offense at the Harvard 31. Sosa had five carries on the drive, the last a three-yard touchdown run. The Bulldogs went for two, but Morris was brought down shy of the goal line and Harvard maintained the lead, 28-26.

A 75-yard touchdown run by tailback Rich Zajeski with 9:59 left gave Harvard a 35-26 lead. The Bulldogs' next drive ended with an incompletion on fourth-and-six at the Harvard 41, and the drive after that ended with an interception that enabled the Crimson to run out the clock.

Report by Sam Rubin '95 (sam.rubin@yale.edu), Yale Sports Publicity

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