NAVY FOOTBALL 2011 No. 2 Observations from An Olde Poolie

Sep. 10, 2011. NAVY 40 Western Kentucky 14. On a muggy day with rain showers, Navy overcame a number of errors (sloppy at times), to outrun Western Kentucky before an almost sold-out stadium of 20,000 fans in Bowling Green, KY. Navy's young defense stepped up and had a good game gathering three fumbles and two interceptions - one by Traves Bush that he returned for 49 yards and a TD. The Hilltoppers were focusing on QB Proctor who effectively pitched out to other backs while tossing two TD passes. Slotback Santiago (Hawaii) was injured on the last play of the first half with possibly a broken arm and may be out for the year. He is the most versatile slotback and will be missed.

Navy took the opening Kick-off. On third and seven Tech picked up 8 for a first down at mid-field. On the next play S/B Howell took a pitchout, got good blocking, and raced 49 yards for a TD. Navy 7 WK 0. After each team punted, Navy recovered a fumble at WK 30. A holding penalty set them back and they punted. Navy then fumbled a punt at their 34 but the defense held. A WK field goal failed. Navy then went 80 yards in four plays. Two passes - one a 44 yarder to WR Aiken who scored. A bad snap resulted in a failed PAT. Navy 13 WK 0 as the quarter ended. On their next possession the Midshipmen drove 78 yards in 5 plays scoring on a 27 yard pass to a wide-open WR Turner. Navy 20 WK 0. with 11 minutes left. WK answered with a 61 yard drive in 7 plays. Navy 20 WK 7. Navy answered with a quick 60 yard drive in 5 plays. FB Tech had 45 yards in two carries. Santiago scored from the four. Navy 27 WK 7 with 4:41 remaining.

On Navy's second possession of the third quarter Howell again took a pitch out and scampered 57 yards for a TD. (Two carries = two TDs). Teague missed the PAT. Navy 33. WK 7. The Hilltoppers went to a freshman QB who, with 6 - 10 passes, managed an 86 yard drive. Navy 33 WK 14 with over 4 minutes left in the quarter. With over nine minutes left in the fourth quarter DB Traves Bush picked off a pass and raced untouched 49 yards for the final score. Navy 40 WK 14. With less than three minutes left in the game coach Niumatalolo went to the bench Third string FB Patrick had 45 yard run to the 3 but Navy ran out the clock.

The Midshipmen made too many mistakes; five fumbles plus some penalties, and missed two PATs. Junior LB Matt Brewer had a good day as did the defense. Tech had 102 yards on 15 carries. Howell had 113 yards (2 TDs) on three carries. Proctor was 3 - 7 passing 100 yards; two passes for TDs. Navy gained 410 yards on the ground. A good win against a struggling team.

Next week: at No. 12 South Carolina (2-0) who beat Georgia 45 - 42 in a wild game. Last week South Carolina beat East Carolina 56 - 37. The game time is 6 pm on ESPN2. The game is sold out.

Army lost at home to San Diego state 23 - 20. Air Force lost to TCU 35 - 19.

After the South Carolina game, Navy has a week off then hosts Air Force in a 12 Noon game Oct. 1.

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