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November 12, 2011

Harvard Clinches 14th Ivy League Football Championship

Courtesy of Harvard Athletic Communications

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Harvard clinched its 14th Ivy League championship, its sixth under Tim Murphy, with a 37-20 win against Penn Saturday afternoon at Harvard Stadium.

The Crimson (8-1, 6-0 Ivy League) wrapped up the outright league title with a week remaining in the season behind a defense that limited the Quakers (5-4, 4-2) to 219 yards, including just 24 on the ground, and caused three turnovers. The win combined with Dartmouth's victory over Brown gave Harvard a two-game cushion in the standings with only The Game next week at Yale left on the schedule.

Josue Ortiz paced the defensive effort with 10 tackles, including 3.5 for loss and two sacks, while also forcing and recovering a fumble. Alex Gedeon added eight tackles, and Chris Splinter notched six. Harvard also won battles of special teams and field position, starting four drives in Penn territory in addition to Alexander Norman's interception return for a touchdown.

The Crimson ran for 204 yards, with Zach Boden (11 carries for 86 yards) and Treavor Scales (10 for 70) scoring once and averaging more than seven yards per rush. Collier Winters ran for 56 yards and a score to go with 132 yards on 13-for-20 passing and a touchdown pass to Cameron Brate.

Ortiz, Scales and Winters are among 21 seniors on the Crimson. The members of that class, who were freshmen when Harvard last won the Ivy crown in 2008, were honored before the game, their last at Harvard Stadium.