Cornell suffered its fourth straight loss of the season on Saturday against Ivy League rival Harvard by a score of 40-3. The Big Red is now 0-4 on the season while the Crimson is an undefeated 4-0 and favored to win the Ivy League conference. This was Cornell’s first loss of the season that was not a one-possession game and came against an opponent that had outscored its previous three competitors 139-37. Cornell actually put up the first points of the game with a first quarter field goal but it was all Harvard afterwards with the Crimson scoring the final 40 points of the game.
There was no one player to blame for Cornell’s loss this week. Each phase of the game was played with room for improvement. Quarterback Robert Somborn had by far his worst outing of the season after he had improved each prior game. He threw for a season low 107 yards and could not find the end zone for the first time all season. He also had a season high three interceptions. Running back Luke Hagy had been the focal point of Cornell’s offense all season and came into the game with six consecutive 100-yard rushing games but even he was ineffective on Saturday. His phenomenal streak was snapped and he was held to just 33 yards on 15 attempts. He is now just two rushing yards away from being the seventh player in Cornell history to reach 2,000 career rushing yards. Ben Rogers was the leading receiver for Cornell with just 38 yards.
As lackluster as the offense was against Harvard, the defense struggled as well. Opposing quarterback Scott Hosch threw for 244 yards and three touchdowns, but the real damage came on the ground. Harvard had a total of 249 rushing yards led by Paul Stanton with 101 of those yards and a score. Hosch also added 78 yards and another touchdown on the ground as well. Overall, Harvard averaged a monstrous 6.4 yards a carry, which certainly helped their ability to score an 40 points in this game.
This was the first time Cornell has been behind by such a large margin this season. Cornell’s late game struggles have been well documented in their earlier games, but on Saturday there was no chance to try and close out strong. This was by far the most dominant team the Big Red has faced thus far and they simply lost to a better team. Coach Archer has to remind his team of the first three winnable games and not dwell on this one sided defeat, while still looking to improve all facets of the team. Cornell will once again try to win their first game of the season against a non-conference opponent, Sacred Heart. The game will be played on Saturday, October 17 at 1 pm at Fairfield, Connecticut.