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Dartmouth moved to 2-0 in the Ivy League with a convincing 58-0 victory over Harvard Saturday in Canton, Mass. Big Green All American Madison Hughes was in attendance but did not participate due to National Team obligations, but Dartmouth had no trouble continuing its winning ways nonetheless. The Ivy League perennial champs have started the season strongly with two consecutive 50-point wins over Cornell and Harvard, respectively.
“Right now we are really focusing on the Ivy League. It is always our goal coming in to win the Ivy League and Harvard was the next step in that goal,” Dartmouth captain Peter Savarese said.
Harvard came out very competitive and was able to disrupt Dartmouth at the breakdown. “They gave us a good challenge and certainly took it to us a little bit up front to start and disrupted some of our basics,” Savarese added.
Harvard was knocking on the door at the end of the first half but was unable to capitalize. Dartmouth led by several tries at the break, but was able to open the game up even more in the second half thanks to some tactical adjustments.
“We really focused around the breakdown, controlling their interior attack," said Saverese. "We worked on getting the ball through hands and what we are good at which is utilizing our speed and some of the great athletes we have on the backline."
Despite not having the services of Hughes, Dartmouth did not miss a beat. Combined with the loss ok key players to graduation Dartmouth had some big shoes to fill, and they have to fill Hughes' throughout the season, as he was named captain of the 7s Eagles ahead of their first tournament, and he's expected to be called upon throughout the IRB 7s World Series.
“While Madison is an unbelievable rugby player, we have some other pretty good rugby players on the team, and we are looking to keep the standard high even if he is not able to play with us every week," noted Savarese.
Sophomore Max Parker has stepped up into a starting role after replacing Kevin Clark who Dartmouth lost to graduation. He has a handful of tries in the young season. Zack Fowler has been a big force in the centers and has made a major impact through two games.
In other Ivy League action, Princeton defeated Penn 41-7, Columbia outlasted Cornell 34-5 and Brown upended Yale 26-19.