At least last week’s game was close.
The Lafayette Leopards dominated on both sides of the ball on Saturday as they defeated the Yale football team, 31-14, at the Yale Bowl.
Things looked promising for the Elis at first. Wide receiver Peter Balsam ’11 recovered a Lafayette fumble during the opening kickoff and a few plays later caught a 3-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Patrick Witt ’12 on fourth-and-goal.
From there, it was almost all downhill for the Bulldogs (1-2, 0-1 Ivy), as the Leopards (3-1) scored the next 24 points, including a 13-yard touchdown pass that came with less than a minute left in the first half. The drive gave Lafayette both the momentum and a 10-7 lead as the teams headed into their locker rooms.
“The turning point of the game was their ability to score right before halftime,” head coach Tom Williams said. “I thought that deflated us a little bit.”
The Leopards made sure that they kept the momentum going for the second half, scoring touchdowns during their next two possessions as well.
The Yale defense, which last week kept Cornell to only three first downs and 166
total yards, struggled against the Leopards, who had 24 first downs and 396 total yards.
Both the Eli passing and running games struggled on the afternoon. Tailback Jordan Farrell ’10 was limited to 37 yards rushing and Witt went 7-for-13 for 60 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
One bright spot for Yale, however, was the play of backup quarterback Brook
Hart ’11. After playing in two of the Bulldogs’ first nine drives, Hart took over for
Witt midway through the fourth quarter and led the Yale offense on its two most impressive drives of the game.
During those two possessions, Hart completed 13 of 17 passes for 154 yards and threw for a touchdown.
“I feel that it was a spark for our team, but we’ve got to do it for four
quarters,” Hart said. “Anyone can go out and put one drive together. It doesn’t really mean too much.”
While Hart’s play may not have had much of an effect upon the overall game, it may prove to be significant in terms of who will be hiking the ball against Dartmouth next weekend. The Elis will host the Big Green at the Yale Bowl at 12 p.m. next Saturday.