Each week, DartmouthSports.com will spotlight two outstanding student-athletes - one male, one female - as Dartmouth's Athletes of the Week. Student-athletes may be chosen based upon their efforts both on and off the field of competition.
Another record-breaking performance on the gridiron and a pair of tournament titles have earned football's Greg Patton (College Park, Ga.) and tennis' Mary Beth Winingham (Carmel, Ind.) Dartmouth Athlete of the Week distinction. For the second time in three weeks the football team rode a single-game rushing record to victory as Patton ran for 243 yards in his first varsity game. More veteran than her counterpart, the senior Winingham won singles and doubles titles at the Big Green Invitational.
Athlete of the Week:
Greg Patton (College Park, Ga.), Football, Freshman, Quarterback
Freshman Greg Patton set a Dartmouth single-game record by rushing for 243 yards and scored both Big Green touchdowns in a thrilling 20-17 double-overtime victory over Cornell on Nov. 7. His record-breaking performance came just two weeks after the 18-year-old record was broken by teammate Nick Schwieger. Of his 243 yards, 108 came in the fourth quarter as Dartmouth rallied from a 10-0 deficit, and the final 25 came in the first overtime period to help the Green knot the score again at 17. Patton was selected as the Ivy League Offensive Player of the Week as well as the Rookie of the Week, and his 243 yards are the second most by an FCS player this season.
What were your expectations going into the game having not
played a down in a varsity contest previously?
Going into the game, Coach Teevens told me that he planned on utilizing me within the first series or two. He said that from there he would determine how much we would use this formation simply based on how Cornell adjusted and if it was productive. I was expecting to see a couple snaps but honestly not that many.
How did you overcome any nervousness you might have had?
I really didn't. Before the game I was pretty nervous, but coach Teevens told me that having some nerves were good, but also to be confident and just go play football. This helped to calm me down, but when the game came, I was still pretty nervous.
You were recruited to be a defensive back. How did you end
up remaining at quarterback?
I was a triple option quarterback in high school and I occasionally played free safety, but throughout the recruiting process I was a defensive back. I didn't find out that I would be playing quarterback until a few weeks before coming up for preseason camp. I don't know a whole lot about the situation, but the numbers worked out in such a way where in the spring there would be no freshman quarterback, so the moved me to quarterback.
What do you look for in the defense when you are about to
get the snap?
Before taking the snap I just look for the things that we have discussed in meetings and seen on film all week from the defense: alignment, tendencies, and leverage of the defensive players. All of the coaches do a great job in preparing us for what we will see in the game.
What can fans expect for an encore this weekend?
Fans can expect another hard fought football game.
Athlete of the Week:
Mary Beth Winingham (Carmel, Ind.), Women's Tennis, Senior
Senior Mary Beth Winingham (Carmel, Ind.) helped lead the Dartmouth women's tennis team to a 35-2 record during the three days of competition at the Big Green Invite this past weekend at the Boss Tennis Center. She joined with junior Molly Scott (Trabuco Canyon, Calif.) in doubles action and went undefeated with the closest match coming from Boston University at 8-5. In addition to her success in doubles, Winingham went 3-0 in singles play. She won two matches in straight sets and in her lone three-set match she dropped the opening set and came back to win the final two.
You won both a
singles and doubles title this weekend. What were your keys to success?
I think that Molly and I have played together for long enough now that we've gotten to the point where we really know each other's styles and can sense what the other is going to do, and use it to play into each other's strengths. As a team, we played stronger teams this fall than in past years, really forcing us to step it up a level. Having the opportunity to play in California and at regionals was also very motivating, and I worked really hard this fall to expand my game and try different things.
What is the
difference between singles and doubles when it comes to your mindset prior to
the match? Also how important is chemistry with your doubles partner?
In doubles, it's really important for me to be able to laugh and relax. Having good chemistry with your partner is almost more important than the level of each other's games. Tennis is extremely mental, and even a slight feeling of uneasiness with a partner can potentially throw someone off of his/her game completely. Molly and I really didn't have much trouble, as we have a lot of fun together, but we know that each of us wants to win just as badly as the other. It's become really fun for us! As for singles, it's more important for me to be serious and focus in on what I'm going to try to do; it's much more about me getting in a competitive mindset.
In your opinion did
you and the team have a successful fall campaign?
I think we've had a very successful fall, because we have come so far since the beginning. Ending with a domination of our Big Green tournament was just proof that our hard work has paid off, which is essentially our goal for the fall. We played some pretty challenging teams in the beginning, but I think we'd have even better results if we played them again now.
What will you do with
your time off between fall and winter/spring season?
We'll still lift and run, but we won't have real practice until the winter season, when captain's practices start. Until then, I'll probably keep playing a few times a week, in an effort to avoid completely losing everything I gained from the fall! But it's also nice to have a break, and makes coming back that much more motivating.