Big Green pounces on Columbia in 2nd
In what could have been a rebuilding year, the DWRC has dominated the Northeast. The point differential between the Big Green and its regular season opponents was 286-22. Having played only two close games all season, the DWRC was not sure what to expect from its first playoff game against Columbia University. The Lions provided one of the biggest challenges of the season for the Big Green. The Lions put up a good fight and held the Big Green scoreless in the first half, but Dartmouth picked it up in the second, scoring four tries to win the match 26-0.
The referee called a very tight game and the DWRC had trouble adjusting, particularly in the opening half. Every time the Big Green gained some momentum, they were halted by a whistle. Only some great defense prevented Columbia from taking the lead, and the DWRC came off the field at halftime frustrated with the scoreless tie.
The second half was certainly different. In a technique fast becoming a DWRC trademark, the Dartmouth pack-wheeled a Columbia scrum. Off of the ensuing Big Green scrum, the ball was spun out wide to wing Sonia Tarantolo '04, who made a long run down the right sideline. The ball was spun out to Nina Markey '02 finally touched it down in the corner of the try zone.
Columbia regained possession of the ball after the kickoff and came quite close to scoring a try of their own, but 8-man Betsy Super '02 stole a lineout. The ball was passed among the backs until All-American center Bridget Waitkus '02 punted the ball. Markey, a former track sprinter, raced down the field, grabbed the kick on a bounce, and outran everyone nearly 50 meters to the try zone.
Great defense gave the Big Green their next try. Columbia was awarded a set scrum after a Dartmouth knock-on five meters from the try zone. The Lions managed to get the ball out of the pack, but the Columbia fly half thought twice about kicking for the sideline. Instead, while trying to find some space, the fly half was stripped of the ball, and Waitkus fell on it in the try zone.
After chasing down a Columbia prop from behind, Tarantolo made a 40-meter run down the sideline, breaking two tackles and carrying the ball to the middle of the try zone.
Next weekend, the DWRC travels back to UMass-Amherst to defend its Northeastern title and attempt to qualify for the national tournament held in the spring. "This weekend is it, it's our chance to play our hearts out for the last time until the spring," says Hicks. "We're ready to show everyone what the DWRC can do."
Anne Snider is the Secretary of the DWRC.