Ithaca, N.Y. Penn football earned a 20-14 victory over Cornell at Schoellkopf Field, allowing the Red and Blue to retain the Trustees’ Cup, finish the season alone in second in the Ivy League give the Class of 2005 the highest winning percentage at Penn in the modern era.
The Quakers (8-2, 6-1 Ivy) used a pair of first-half scores to propel themselves to the win. Bobby Fallon recorded his first interception for a touchdown when he picked off a D.J. Busch pass at Cornell’s (4-6, 4-3 Ivy) 17-yard line and rambled into the end zone untouched to give Penn a 7-0 lead with 10:17 remaining in the opening frame.
Along with the interception, Fallon registered three tackles (two solo) and a sack for a three-yard loss. Kory Gedin quietly led the Quakers defense with 11 stops (nine solo), the first double-digit tackle performance of the sophomore’s career. Scotty Williams made his mark as well, recording seven tackles (five solo) and two sacks for a combined loss of nine yards.
The first half ended on a pair of statistical firsts for the Red and Blue as Gabe Marabella threw his first career touchdown pass to J.J. Stanton for his first career touchdown reception. The scoring was the result of a fake Derek Zoch 22-yard field-goal attempt. The touchdown capped a six-play, 50-yard drive that lasted two minutes. Penn took over possession on the drive due to a Ryan Kuhn fumble at midfield, the Big Red’s second turnover of the first half.
Freshman quarterback again showed poise and promise, starting his second-career game and throwing for 257 yards on 19-of-36 passing, all career highs. He connected with senior Dan Castles on career-long 53-yard completion in the first half. Castles ended the day with eight catches for 124 yards, giving him 2,444 yards for his career. The yardage total moves Castles past Don Clune (1971-73) for second in all-time receiving yards at Penn and past Clune for 11th all-time in the Ivy League.
Matt Carre matched a single-game career high in receiving yards on one catch, hauling in a 57-yard pass from Walker in the third quarter. Carre finished with a career-high 67 yards on four receptions. The play took the Quakers down to Cornell’s 15-yard line and two plays later Kyle Ambrogi scored from 14 yards out for his second touchdown of the season, capping a nine-play, 99-yard drive and giving Penn a 20-0 lead with seven ticks left on the clock in the third quarter. Ambrogi led Penn’s ground attack with 49 yards on 17 carries.
Cornell mounted a comeback, scoring 14 points in the fourth quarter, both on short-yardage carries. Busch scored from one yard out and Joshua Johnston punched it in for the score from four yards out to cut Penn’s lead to 20-14 with 4:54 remaining in regulation. The Big Red had the ball on Penn’s 25-yard line with 1:21 remaining in the fourth quarter and Michael Johns intercepted Busch’s pass in the end zone intended for Brian Romney, who led Cornell with 115 yards receiving on seven catches. Romney is only the second receiver to record 100 yards or more receiving on this Red and Blue defense.
Twenty-one seniors comprise the Class of 2005 and the win over Cornell gave these seniors a 35-4 overall record during their four-year tenure for a .897 winning percentage, the highest in the modern era (since 1956), fourth in program history. This class’s 26-2 record in the Ivy League matches last season’s senior class for the best Ivy winning percentage (.929) in League history.
Written by Mat Kanan, associate director of athletic communications