Princeton defeated Columbia 39–12 to improve to 2–0 in South Division Ivy league play. The Tigers once again used a late scoring surge to pull away following a tightly-contested physical match that hung in the balance well into the second half.
Princeton opened the game with a strong start. Senior Andrew Slade found space down the right side and penetrated deep into Lion territory. Following a Columbia offside penalty, junior Jack Kilgallon scored the first try of the match. However, Columbia came right back to take the lead; the Lions stole a Princeton lineout and followed it up with some strong drives from their powerful scrum. The referee judged that Princeton unfairly infringed and awarded Columbia a penalty try.
Trailing 7–5, Princeton redoubled its efforts and after another Lions penalty, a missed kick bounced off of the goalpost and into Kilgallon’s hands for a second try. Junior Kwame Amaning made the conversion and the Tigers took a 12–7 lead.
Just two minutes later, Slade almost added another try but could not get the ball down in time as he was forced out by a determined Columbia defense. But in a subsequent play, Kilgallon added his third try of the half following an offload from Slade. With the lead at ten and the clock ticking down the first half, senior Will Kittler intercepted a Columbia pass and took the ball in untouched for a try. The Tigers took a 22–7 lead into the break.
Columbia came out of the half and pinned Princeton deep in its own half. Playing a slow grinding style of rugby, Columbia was eventually rewarded with a try when their scrumhalf found a gap in the defense and scored.
As they did last week, Princeton upped the tempo and pulled away late in the second half. Junior Owen Tedford got the team started with a strong run and it seemed that each player had a hand in getting Slade over the try line to score and bring the match to 27–12. Princeton forced the ball deep into Columbia territory once again and Tedford did the rest, this time scoring on his own. After Amaning’s successful conversion, Princeton took a 34–12 lead with ten minutes left in the game. Slade would add one more try in the 75th minute giving Princeton solid 39-12 win over Columbia.
Jack Kilgallon was named our A-side Princeton’s Player of the Match for his all-round outstanding attack and work in defense.
Princeton’s B-side played its first game of the season with many players getting their first chance to play in a live game. Showing great skill and determination, the Princeton B-side beat Columbia’s B-side 53-12. Freshman Carson Maconga was named our B-side Player of the Match.
Princeton’s final match of the South division is next Saturday against a very strong team from U Penn. The winner will be crowned the Ivy League South Division Champion, and earn a spot in the Ivy League playoffs against the North division in November. Kickoff for the UPenn match is scheduled for 1.30 PM.