New Haven, Conn. No. 21 Penn’s offense put up 497 total yards and 17 points on the strength of two Sam Mathews touchdowns to defeat Yale, 17-7, in the Yale Bowl. The Quakers’ defense allowed the Bulldogs offensive unit to possess the ball for only six minutes, six seconds for a total of 87 yards in the second half, sealing the Red and Blue’s 18th-straight Ivy League victory. The win breaks Penn’s own Ancient Eight record of 17-consecutive wins from the 1992-95 seasons.
Despite Penn’s (5-1, 3-0) dominance on the defensive side of the ball, Yale (3-3, 1-2) still was within striking distance late in the fourth quarter. With 6:17 remaining on the clock, the Bulldogs took over possession at their own 20-yard line. Seven plays later, and trailing 17-7, Yale was on Penn’s 23-yard line and looking to pull to within one score of the Quakers. Ralph Plumb had just pulled in an Alvin Cowan 10-yard pass to set up first down and Cowan went to Plumb again. Brad Martinez popped the ball out of Plumb’s grasp to force the fumble as Doug Middleton scooped up the loose ball to secure possession and the victory for Penn.
Offensively, Mathews broke out of a minor slump to rush for 169 yards on 25 carries. It is a season high for the junior and the third-most rushing yards in a single game for the Pittsburgh, Pa. native. Mathews also broke a scoring drought of sorts, getting into the end zone for the first time since the opener against San Diego where he punched in three touchdowns. He scored from one yard out at the 7:55 mark of the opening quarter to put Penn up 7-0 on its initial drive. Mathews scored again, this time from four yards out to give the Quakers 17 points with one minute remaining in the third quarter.
Dan Castles reached the century mark for the third time this season, hauling in eight catches for 131 yards, giving him 589 yards for the season and 2,067 for his career. Castles becomes only the fourth Quaker in program history to reach the 2,000-yard plateau.
Sophomore kicker Peter Stine made his presence known as the sophomore kicked a pair of extra points and his first career field goal from 25 yards out in the third quarter.
Yale’s offense put the pressure on the Quakers in the opening two quarters, gaining a total of 226 yards. Robert Carr rushed for 144 first-half yards and was held to only 23 in the second half. Cowan through Yale’s only touchdown to Chandler Henry in the first quarter, becoming the Bulldogs all-time leader in touchdown passes with 36.
Penn heads back to the friendly confines of Franklin Field for a showdown with Ivy League rival Brown on Oct. 30. Kick off is scheduled for 1 p.m.
Written by Mat Kanan, associate director of athletic communications