Roar, Lion, Roar

Lions Win at Homecoming

Neither rain nor cold nor wind could stop Columbia from ending its 15-game Homecoming losing streak as Oren Milstein ’20 kicked three field goals and the Lions’ defense shut down Dartmouth in a 9–7 victory on October 22. Columbia’s last Homecoming win came in 2000.

Football players grappling

Lions’ ferocious defense halts Dartmouth.

Mike McLaughlin / Columbia Athletics

Milstein kicked field goals of 31, 20 and 33 yards through the inclement weather at Robert K. Kraft Field, to the delight of the vast majority of the crowd of 8,946 as well as coach Al Bagnoli, who said, “I couldn’t be happier for our kids, our alumni base and the entire Columbia football community. It was an awesome win; nobody left early considering the suspense of it.”

Indeed, spectators saw a 47-yard field goal try by Dartmouth’s David Smith fall just short with 27 seconds left in the game. Columbia’s defense, led by linebacker Gianmarco Rea ’17, came up with big plays all day, stopping the Big Green on 16-of-17 third-down conversion attempts. Rea led the Lions with 11 tackles against Dartmouth and had 108 for the season, tops in the Ivy League.

The Lions finished the season with a 3–7 record, with five of their losses coming by eight points or fewer, and a 2–5 mark in Ivy play. They defeated Wagner 15–13 in a game in which Milstein accounted for all of Columbia’s points with a school-record five field goals, and they closed out the season with a 31–13 win at Brown. Rea and Milstein both were voted to the All-Ivy first team by the conference coaches.