HANOVER, N.H. -- Mike DeSantis' third field goal of the afternoon broke a 21-21 deadlock and pushed Holy Cross to a 24-21 overtime victory over Dartmouth, spoiling the Big Green's Homecoming Game.
Holy Cross (5-2) won the coin toss and chose to defend on the first series. Starting at the 25, Dartmouth suffered a loss on a rushing attempt back to the 28, and then had two misses when quarterback Mike Fritz (Houston, Texas) looked for wide receiver Brian Evans (Fairfield, Texas).
On fourth down, kicker Andrew Kempler (Westport, Conn.) lined up a 45-yard field goal. A bad snap forced a desperation pass from holder Brian Scullin (Alexandria, Va.) to Kempler, but it was only for seven yards.
That set up the Holy Cross heroics. Quarterback Dominic Randolph competed a pair of passes to Ryan Maher and Thomas Harrison, and then running back Terrance Gass took the ball to the one-yard line.
DeSantis connected from 18 yards out.
Dartmouth took a 14-10 lead into halftime as Fritz scored on a 30-yard run with 5:44 left in the first quarter before tailback Hudson Smythe (Menlo Park, Calif.) hit paydirt from the one yard line with 8:58 left in the second.
Holy Cross sandwiched a three-yard TD run by Gass and a 20-yard field goal by DeSantis around both Dartmouth scores.
The Crusaders tacked another DeSantis field goal on with 10:38 to go in the third before Smythe bulled in from three yards out. Kempler booted his third PAT of the afternoon for a 21-13 lead at the 6:36 mark of the third.
Less than four minutes later, Maher gathered in a 15-yard pass from Randolph and the Crusaders' converted the two-point conversion when Thomas Harrison hauled in another Randolph pass, knotting the game at 21-21.
The Big Green had a chance to decide things in regulation, and the best opportunity came with two seconds on the clock. Starting at the Dartmouth 36 with 3:53 to go, the Big Green drove to the Dartmouth 21, setting up a 38-yard field goal.
Against the wind, Kempler's boot sailed left.
For Dartmouth, Smythe rushed for 67 yards and a pair of touchdowns, while Fritz earned 74, including one TD. He averaged 7.4 yards per carry and also completed 15 of 26 pass attempts for 147 yards.
Junior strong safety Ian Wilson (Burbank, Calif.) led the Big Green's defensive effort with six solo and six assists for 12 tackles.
Dartmouth returns to action next Saturday, traveling to New York City for a conference match-up with Columbia. Game time is 12:30 pm.