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Lavin '05 Eyes New Milestones
Lavin '05
Lavin '05 (photo by Mark Austin-Washburn)

"This year, I hit a 68-yarder in practice, and then I hit a 70 off the left upright, but I had some wind at my back," senior kicker Tyler Lavin says of matter-of-factly. "My leg's feeling really good this year."

Coming into his final season with the Big Green, Lavin has kicked his way into the Dartmouth and Ivy League football record books, and more milestones are within his grasp.

His 52-yarder on September 20, 2003, was a yard farther than Dartmouth's record boot, kicked by him and three others, including former NFL standout Nick Lowery '78. Lavin's 50-yarder on November 1 of last year was his career third from 50 yards or beyond, a league record. The Ivy mark for distance is 54 yards, hit four times by three players, last in 1976; the Division I-AA record is 62 yards.

However, Lavin's records would not exist if not for a couple fortuitous events.

A soccer player until eighth grade, Lavin began his career as quarterback and safety on junior varsity as a high school freshman. Despite booming kicks on the soccer pitch, he couldn't get the hang of booting a pigskin. But when his team's kicker earned a two-game suspension, Lavin decided to give kicking another try.

"I started trying to kick it soccer style-and it clicked," he says. Following the jayvee season, Lavin drew a varsity call-up.

The Potomac, Md., native played his final three years as Winston Churchill High School's varsity kicker. After stellar sophomore and junior seasons, some large Division I-A universities showed interest, but he narrowed his final choice to Dartmouth and Cornell, his father's alma mater.

During his freshman season, Lavin made an immediate impact for the Big Green. His first career attempt was from 25 yards with 1:57 remaining in a tie game in the season opener.

The faith Coach John Lyons has shown in Lavin has helped his confidence, and the '05 would relish an opportunity to join Lowery as one of the only NFL kickers to come out of Dartmouth. He has one season left to chase records.

"Depending on the conditions," Lavin says, "I'd love a shot at 60 or 65."

Dunn Targets Men's Basketball Team

After 15 years as an assistant coach, Terry Dunn has emerged on top at Dartmouth. With stops at Army, Air Force, Colorado State, and Colorado dotting his winding road to the Ivy League, Dunn enters the 2004-05 season as the 26th head coach in the Big Green men's basketball history. More importantly, he has a collegiate program to call his own for the very first time.

"It's something I've been working toward for the last 15 years as a college coach, as well as a high school coach," Dunn says. A native of Raleigh, N.C., Dunn graduated from Northern Colorado in 1977 as a three-year basketball letterwinner before heading up the Harrison High School boys' basketball program in Colorado Springs, Colo., from 1982 to 1989. He spent the next decade and a half as a college assistant before coming to Dartmouth.

Dunn has lofty goals for a team that a year ago was 3-25 but has suffered through key injuries and lost 13 games by 10 points or less.

"In order to teach them how to win those close games, we must win a couple of those close games. And to win a couple of those close games, the confidence naturally increases and builds," he says. "I think you have to create an environment, culture, and attitude that you try to refuse to lose those close games."

The Big Green returns sophomore Leon Pattman (13.2 ppg), the team's leading scorer and defending Ivy League Rookie of the Year. Six-foot-ten senior David Gardner (8.9 ppg) and 6'9" junior Calvin Arnold (40 blocks) will provide height down low, while Steve Callahan and Mike McLaren, both '05s, and Mike Lang '06, who combined to hit 123 3-pointers, can pack a punch from distance.

Dunn hopes to instill discipline, hard work, and unselfishness in his players. To succeed, he says the players need to be better defensively and on the boards, and, while it is already a good scoring team, he wants to get the big guys more productive offensively.

"I would like for us to have a chance to compete in the upper echelon of the Ivy League," Dunn says. "If we can do that, anything can happen."

Vogt Comes Full Circle

Vogt (photo by David Silverman)

One of the newest members of the Big Green softball program spent the last two years soaking up knowledge so she could become more well rounded. She studied under one of the finest teachers around. And she never had to go to class.

Meet new Dartmouth head coach Christine Vogt.

Vogt left Columbia three years after building the varsity program there in favor of Central Michigan, where she assisted Margo Jonker, who served as Team USA's pitching coach when it won gold at the 2000 Olympics. Under Jonker's tutelage, Vogt broadened her knowledge of pitching and how to teach that element of the game.

"I think it's my job to be proficient in all the positions and then utilize my staff in ways where our strengths will help the team," Vogt says. "[The goal is to be] able to really take those individual athletes and convey what it is we need to do to get better.

"I have high hopes for this year," she adds. She already sees the players' energy, desire, and commitment to improve. "That is really promising in terms of a new coach stepping in, when you have willing participants."

Putting in her time is nothing new to Vogt. A catcher for Harvard as an undergraduate, the Amherst, Mass., native graduated in 1994 and worked two years as an assistant at Division III Smith College (1997-98) before coaching Columbia (1999-2002), during which she helped the program ascend to varsity status in 2000. Now, after a pair of seasons working under Jonker at Central Michigan, Vogt has come full circle, returning for her third stint at an Ivy school.

"It seems like I've kind of just spun around in a circle," Vogt says, noting that everyone's been asking her why she came back to the Ivy League. "For me, I think it's the right fit and the right place. Hopefully, this will be my last tour of duty."

By Josh Kessler

Scoreboard

(as of October 3, 2004)

  • Football: 0-3, 0-1 Ivy
  • Jayvee Football: 1-0, 0-0 Ivy
  • Field Hockey: 3-6, 2-1 Ivy
  • Men's Soccer: 2-1-4, 0-0-1 Ivy
  • Women's Soccer: 4-4-2, 1-1 Ivy
  • Women's Volleyball: 3-9, 0-2 Ivy
  • Women's Tennis: 0-0, 0-0 Ivy
  • Men's Tennis: 2-1,0-0 Ivy

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Last Updated: 5/30/08