Saturday, August 30, 2008

Beautiful Day

Rory Wilfork was already clutch as a sophomore in 1994 (CREDIT: Columbia Athletics)

Game of the Day (Day 22)

October 29, 1994

Columbia 17 Princeton 10

The resurgent Lions came into the game with a 3-2-1 record and great weather drawing a then-record Wien Stadium crowd of 12,859 for homecoming.

The previous week, the Lions had stomped Yale by a 30-9 score and Columbia seemed like it was for real.

The game began encouragingly for the Lions with a long drive all the way to the Princeton 6, but Jamie Schwalbe's pass into a crowd in the end zone was picked off to end the threat.

The Lions regrouped on their second possession and mounted another drive as Schwalbe the passer continued to shuttle with Mike Cavanaugh, the option QB. the nine play 70-yard march ended with receiver Jim Jim Jones catching a batted ball in the end zone for a 7-0 lead.

Princeton answered with a field goal, but midway through the second quarter, Columbia made it 14-3 on a big leap by Marcellus Wiley from the one to cap a 53-yard drive.

Schwalbe ran the two-minute drill nicely just before halftime and got the Lions close enough for a short field goal by Matt Linit and it was 17-3 at the break.

Columbia let up in the second half, but not much on defense. Princeton did make it closer midway through the third quarter on a 5-yard touchdown run by QB Harry Nakielny, but after that the Lion defense bent but didn't break.

With less than five minutes left in the game, the Tigers got as close as the Columbia 12, but linebaker Rory Wilfork forced a fumble recovered by Wiley.

Princeton got into Lion territory one last time, but Nakielny's backup was picked off and the game was over. The crowd went crazy.

Two weeks later the Lions would clinch their first winning season since 1971.


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