Dartmouth improved to 2-2 Saturday with a 34-31 victory over Rutgers, but the winless Scarlet Knights weren’t an easy out.
Dartmouth received the first kickoff, and quickly established a firm lead. Co-captain Paul Jarvis was first to score, putting the Green up 5-0 with a corner try. Derek Fish extended Dartmouth’s lead with a penalty shortly thereafter.
Rutgers inside center David Presby responded with an unconverted try, but that would be the Scarlet Knights’ only offensive peep in the opening half, as the Big Green got tries from co-captain Nick Downer, Nate Brakeley and Ian Hogg all reached pay dirt before intermission. Fish converted each, giving Dartmouth a 29-5 halftime lead.
Perhaps resting on their achievements at the end of the first forty minutes, the Big Green came out a little slower at the start of the second half against an increasingly fired up Rutgers offense. Prop Jim Roblin scored Rutgers’s first try of the half just three minutes in.
Will Lehmann countered with a Dartmouth try, extending the lead to 34-12, but with plenty of time to play in the second half, Dartmouth was not yet in the clear.
Rutgers reeled off three-consecutive converted tries to cut their deficit to three at 34-31, with 20 minutes play. At the restart after Rutgers’ third score in that series, Dartmouth put great pressure on the Rutgers offense, stopping several rolling maul phases. The Green forced a turnover and drove down to the Rutgers five-meter line, creeping within striking distance of another try before the clock ran out and the game was decided.
"It was great to get a bonus-point win to help our place in the standings, but we almost let it get away from us in the second half", said co-captain Tommy Brothers. "I'm proud of the boys for grinding it out, but hats off to Rutgers, who brought a physical, tenacious style of play. We've got to stay the course and find more consistency next week against Navy."
"It was a positive first half, we were able to dictate most of the phases," added Dartmouth coach Alex Magleby. "The Second half was a bit of a capitulation, but we hung in for the victory against a physical, quality Rutgers forward pack."