Academy Football Summary: Navy Wins Thriller over Indiana, AFA Wins, Army Loses
Evan Habeeb-US PRESSWIRE
A thrilling one-point win for Navy at Annapolis Saturday, 31-30, over Indiana.
The Mids' freshman quarterback Keenan Reynolds completed a four-yard touchdown pass to junior Matt Aiken with just 2:02 left in the game. A crowd of 33,441 watched the game on Homecoming Day at Navy-Marine Corps Stadium.
The Hoosiers outgained Navy 417 to 353 on the day. Their sophomore QB Cameron Coffman threw 25 of 37 for 244 yards but was hurt by two interceptions. Navy was led by the 89 yards rushing of senior slotback Gee Gee Greene and the overall play of Keenan Reynolds, who ran for 66 yards and a touchdown while completing 8 of 13 for 96 yards.
Indiana went out to a 10-0 lead on a Mitch Ewald 25-yard field goal and a one-yard touchdown run by Stephen Houston. Navy got on the scoreboard in the second quarter on a three-yard run by Keenan Reynolds, but then Indiana came back to march down the field for a 72-yard drive culminating in a three-yard run by D'Angelo Roberts.
Later Navy linebacker Jordan Drake made a huge defensive play, intercepting a Coffman pass and returning it 24 yards for a touchdown. Ewald kicked his second field goal from 23 yards at the end of the half to give the Hoosiers a 17-14 lead.
In the third, Navy went ahead on a 17-yard run by junior slotback Darius Staten, but Ewald's third field goal of the game from 30 yards away put Indiana ahead 23-21 after three quarters.
Early in the fourth, Indiana marched 80 yards downfield for a score recorded by Tevin Coleman on a three-yard run, taking a 30-21 lead. Navy drove down the field and had 1st-and-goal at the Hoosier six yard line, but ground attempts by Noah Copeland and two by Reynolds left the ball on fourth down at the one.
Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo called for a field goal, which was converted from 18 yards by freshman Nick Sloan. Indiana led 30-24 with just 5:30 left in the game.
The Midshipmen received a big series from their defense, which forced Indiana to punt after two incomplete passes and a seven-yard gain. Navy took over on their own 28 with 4:48 left. A 21-yard pass completion by Reynolds to Greene brought the ball across midfield to the Indiana 47.
Two plays later, Greene carried to the Indiana 21. With 3rd-and-3 at the four, Reynolds threw to junior Matt Aiken for the tying score. The PAT kick by Sloan gave Navy the 31-30 lead.
On the second play of the ensuing Indiana possession, the Navy defense came up with another huge play, as sophomore Parrish Gaines intercepted a Cameron Coffman pass to ice the win for the Mids.
A huge victory for Navy, now 4-3 on the season, their first victory over a Big Ten team since 1979.
The Mids head next to Greenville, NC to play East Carolina (5-3) on Saturday. The Pirates defeated UAB 42-35 in Birmingham on Saturday.
New Mexico had 409 yards rushing the football, compared with the Air Force's 291 yards on the ground.
The Lobos, now led by former ND head coach Bob Davies, got off to a 10-0 lead on a 20-yard field goal by Justus Adams and an 82-yard drive, completed with a one-yard rush by Kasey Carrier.
Cobbs' first touchdown run of the game capped off a 78-yard Air Force drive and got the Falcons on the board. In the second quarter, AFA linebacker Alex Means made a huge defensive play, intercepting a B.R. Holbrook pass and returning it 65 yards for a touchdown, giving the Falcons a 14-10 lead at the half.
In the second half, New Mexico went back out in front on a 60-yard drive, resulting in Kasey Carrier's second one-yard touchdown run of the day. Later, Wes Cobb scored his second touchdown of the day to give AFA a 21-17 lead that they would not lose. Cobb scored again in the fourth to give Air Force the margin for the win.
Air Force was able to win despite the loss to injury on the first play from scrimmage of senior running back Cody Getz. The Falcons will host Nevada (6-2) next week, who lost a thriller 39-38 to San Diego State.
Despite a career-high 212 yards rushing by Army's Trent Steelman, Eastern Michigan (1-6) won its first game of the year, defeating the Black Knights at home in Ypsilanti, MI by score of 48-38.
The Eagles were led by the passing of their quarterback, redshirt sophomore Tyler Benz, who threw for 369 yards and five touchdowns. Eastern Michigan gained 577 yards on the Army defense.
Sophomore running back Bronson Hill, who had 283 yards rushing last week against Toledo, gained 185 yards on the ground, including 42 yards on a touchdown run in the fourth quarter.
EMU went ahead 14-0 on Army in the first 5:30 of the game on a 39-yard pass from Benz to Javonti Greene. After a three-and-out on their first drive, the Black Knights punter Chris Boldt was tackled after a bad snap, giving EMU the ball at Army 20.
They scored five plays later on Tyler Benz's second TD pass of the day, to Garrett Hoskins. Army got on the score board with a 42-yard field goal from Dan Grochowski and 55-yard run for a TD by senior Malcolm Brown near the end of the first period.
The second period saw Benz throw two more TD passes, one for 41 yards to Bronson Hill and a one-yarder to tight end Christian Menet. Army QB Trent Steelman launched a 73-yard run for a touchdown at 10:49.
A key moment in the game, with EMU leading 21-17, was an interception by Army's Alex Meier at his own one-yard line, which he ran back 65 yards to the EMU 34. The Black Knights ran the ball to the EMU 6, but Trent Steelman lost the ball when tackled, recovered by EMU's Alex Bellfy. The Eagles led at the half 28-17.
After the Eagles' Dylan Mulder kicked a 34-yard field goal, Trent Steelman converted a second long TD run, this time for 75 yards, to close the EMU lead to 31-17 with 5:34 left in the third quarter.
In the fourth, the Eagles marched down the field twice, with Benz hitting back Ryan Brumfield for an 11-yard touchdown pass, followed less then three minutes later by Bronson Hill's touchdown run, which broke open the game 45-31 for EMU.
Army tried an onside kick after scoring on a nine-yard Trenton Turrentine TD, but the ball was recovered by the Eagles, who converted the possession into a 23-yard field goal by Dylan Mulder to take a 48-31 lead.
Army freshman AJ Schurr came into the game late, and for the second week in a row, moved Army down the field and completed a TD pass to Anthony Stephens. Army recovered an onside kick but could not move the ball.
Disappointing day for West Point who could not benefit from the career running day of their starting QB Trent Steelman.
Next Saturday Army will continue to seek their second win of the season when they host Ball State (5-3) at Michie Stadium. The Cardinals won 41-30 playing at Central Michigan on Saturday.
Ken Kraetzer covers Army football for WVOX 1460 AM in New Rochelle, NY and Sons of the American Legion Radio.
Twitter: SAL50NYRadio KGK914@aol.com.
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