Midshipmen Sink Huskies 35-24
Zerbin Singleton - FILE PHOTO
Nov. 17, 2007
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Zerbin Singleton scored three touchdowns, backup quarterback Jarod Bryant ran for 139 yards and a score, and Navy got a solid performance from its defense in a 35-24 victory over Northern Illinois on Saturday.
It was the third straight win for the Midshipmen (7-4), who have already accepted a bid from the Poinsettia Bowl.
After surrendering 45, 44, 59, 44 and 62 points in its last five games, Navy forced a season-high four punts and allowed only 10 points after halftime.
Playing in place of injured quarterback Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada, Bryant carried 27 times and was 3-for-6 for 60 yards. Singleton finished with 101 yards rushing, and his three TDs gave him six in two games.
Justin Anderson carried 39 times for 140 yards and a touchdown for Northern Illinois (2-9). Ryan Morris went 21-for-35 for 206 yards and threw two touchdown passes to Matt Simon.
Navy went 80 yards on 14 plays to open the second half, using a 1-yard touchdown run by Bryant to take a 28-14 lead.
The Huskies responded with a 24-yard touchdown pass from Morris to Simon. Then, after stopping the Midshipmen on downs, Northern Illinois closed to 28-24 when Chris Nendick kicked a 42-yard field goal with 11:53 remaining.
But Singleton scored on a 12-yard run with 7:51 to go for an 11-point cushion.
The final minute of the first half featured two straight calls overturned by replay, the second providing Northern Illinois a touchdown that shaved Navy's lead to 21-14.
After a replay reversed a touchdown by Anderson on a third-and-goal screen pass, he was stuffed at the line on fourth down from the 1. But a replay determined he got into the end zone.
It was a fitting end to a wild half in which the teams combined for 417 yards and five touchdowns.
The Huskies took a 7-0 lead when Simon caught a short pass from Morris, shook off an arm tackle by Kevin Edwards and scored a 46-yard touchdown.
Navy answered with a 1-yard TD run by Singleton. Then, after a Northern Illinois punt, Singleton scored on a 26-yard run down the right sideline. It was Navy's 11th touchdown in 12 possessions, a streak that began against North Texas.
The Midshipmen punted on their next possession but returned to form on their next drive, moving 92 yards on eight plays to take a 21-7 lead.