Crimson kick clocks Crusaders
Jake McIntyre booted his fourth field goal of the game from 25 yards on the final play to send Harvard to a dramatic 33-31 win over Holy Cross last night in front of 10,056 chilled spectators at Harvard Stadium.
Quarterback Tom Stewart, making his second career start for the Crimson, threw for a pair of scores, and Aaron Shampklin posted his third 100-yard rushing game of the season. Holy Cross received a pair of rushing scores from Domenic Cozier and two touchdown receptions by Martin Dorsey.
Fans were barely in their seats when Harvard got on the scoreboard after only 58 seconds had elapsed. Stewart, who replaced incumbent starter Jake Smith, handed off to Shampklin on Harvard’s third play from scrimmage at its own 43. Shampklin, a sophomore who leads the club in rushing scores, dashed around the left side and went 57 yards, falling into the end zone as Alex Johnson tripped him up at the goal line. Harvard went for a two-point conversion but the pass failed.
A big turn of events occurred with 5:28 left iin the first when Stewart appeared to hit Tyler Adams in the left corner of the end zone for a 17-yard score. Holy Cross’ challenge was upheld by referee Henry Wimberg, who ruled Adams didn’t have possession before he hit the ground. McIntyre then booted a 34yard field goal to hand Harvard a 9-0 lead.
The Crusaders responded behind a 49-yard scamper by Peter Oliver deep into Harvard territory. On third down, Geoff Wade hit wideout Dorsey on a straight fly pattern behind the coverage of Harvard’s Tyler Gray. Dorsey’s score and freshman Derek Ng’s PAT pulled the Crusaders within 9-7 with 12:48 remaining in the half.
On Harvard’s next possession, McIntyre connected for a 21-yard field goal to make it 12-7.
Harvard wasted an opportunity with five minutes to go in the half when Wade botched a handoff and the Crimson recovered at the HC 29. On fourth down, McIntyre missed a chance to boot his careerlong 42-yarder for a second straight week when he pushed the kick wide left.
Harvard’s defense forced HC to punt and took over at its 28 with 1:28 left on the clock. Stewart found James Batch for a 35-yard touchdown with 38 seconds to go. Stewart hit tight end Adam West, who made a highlight juggling catch in the back of the end zone for the two-point conversion. Harvard, playing without star Justice Shelton-Mosley, who injured his leg at Cornell last week, took the 20-7 lead into intermission.
Holy Cross went to its bag of tricks and Jon Roberts fired a 61-yard halfback option pass to receiver Richie DeNicola down to the Harvard 9. Two plays later, Domenic Cozier dashed across for a 2-yard score and Ng’s extra point cut the deficit to 20-14.
Harvard answered again behind McIntyre’s third field goal of the night, this time from 30 yards out.
Wade was hit by Andrew Irwin and Stone Hart and fumbled at the HC 30. Officials blew the whistle for a sack but then reviewed the play which showed Harvard recovered. Stewart hit Adams for a 28-yard score. McIntyre’s kick gave Harvard a commanding 30-14 edge after three quarters. Harvard entered the game at 315-6-1 all-time when scoring 30 or more points.
Cozier cut back for a 24yard TD scamper and his second scoring run to bring the Crusaders close. Receiver Blaise Bell hit Wade on the two-point conversion to cut Harvard’s lead to 30-22 with 12:10 to play.
Harvard then made two miscues, fumbling the kickoff and recovering at its own 2. A bad snap on the next play sailed off a leaping Stewart’s hands and out the back of the end zone for a safety and a 30-24 score.
Harvard forced HC to punt but returner Henry Taylor fumbled at the Harvard 13 and Cristos Argys recovered. On the next play, Wade hit Dorsey for the TD and Ng’s extra point propeled the underdogs into a 31-30 lead.
But McIntyre soon ended any hopes of a Crusaders upset.
GAME-WINNER: Jake McIntyre drilled a field goal as time expired last night to rally Harvard.