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Harvard Is in a Big Rush to Beat Bell-Jeff, 30-7

November 09, 1986|GARY KLEIN | Times Staff Writer

It's tempting to call the Harvard High football team one-dimensional.

The Saracens, who beat Bell-Jeff, 30-7, in a Santa Fe League game Saturday night at Burroughs High like to pass as much as Dominique Wilkins.

Harvard (8-1, 5-0) however, is a multifaceted running team that relies for the most part on tailback Andy Bell, whose performance Saturday may have knocked Bell-Jeff (8-1, 5-1) out of the league championship race.

Bell-Jeff and Chaminade each have lost once in league. Harvard can win the league title outright by beating Chaminade next week. If the Saracens lose, the season will end with the three teams all tied for first.

"I had heard a lot about their defense and I didn't expect to have as much success," said Bell, who carried 22 times for 186 yards and 2 touchdowns. "It wasn't their lack of ability tonight, we just had too many options."

Bell-Jeff, which was ranked eighth by The Times, went into the game giving up an average of just 150 yards and six points a game. But Harvard, ranked seventh, had too many weapons in its backfield.

Quarterback Mike Patterson attempted just two passes and neither was completed. But who needs passing when you have a quarterback like Patterson, who rushed for 89 yards and a touchdown?

"Sure, I'd like to throw more," Patterson said. "But we've been successful this season with the run. We have a lot of options."

Ah, those options again. When Harvard wasn't rolling up chunks of its 389 yards in total offense by giving the ball to Bell or Patterson, the Saracens were getting a lift from fullback Alex Huh who turned in a workmanlike performance of 27 carries for 114 yards and a touchdown.

"They didn't do anything fancy or unexpected," Bell-Jeff Coach Doug Woodlief said. "We had some breakdowns on defense and they took it to us all night."

Bell-Jeff scored the first touchdown of the game when Tony Silva returned a Harvard punt 58 yards with 6:52 left in the first quarter.

The early lead was short-lived as Harvard came storming back with a scoring drive on the possession following the kick-off.

Harvard running back Andy Bell capped a nine-play, 56-yard scoring drive when he took a pitch from quarterback Mike Patterson and ran the ball 28 yards down the left sideline for a touchdown.

Dominic Sandifer kicked a 22-yard field goal with 8:51 left in the half to give Harvard a lead they would never relinquish.

"I think we'll have to open up our game a little bit next week," Harvard Coach Gary Thran said. "But we went into this game wanting to keep the ball on the ground and away from their quarterback. We did a pretty good job."

The Harvard defense, overshadowed by the teams' offense and pregame statistics of the Bell-Jeff defense, held the Guards to just 125 total offense.

Bell-Jeff quarterback Keith Fitzgerald, who had thrown for 1,069 yards, was limited to seven completions for 76 yards.

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