Navy Shuts Out Northern Illinois, 16-0
Nov. 25, 2008
DEKALB, Ill. (AP) -Quarterback Ricky Dobbs scored a touchdown and ran for 124 yards in his first collegiate start to lead Navy to a 16-0 victory over Northern Illinois on Tuesday night.
Navy (7-4) scored on its first two possessions and held the ball for more than 17 minutes in the first half as they beat the Huskies (6-6) for the second straight year.
Dobbs, a sophomore who carried the ball 25 times, fumbled on his team's first play at the Navy 9. He alertly recovered the loose ball and led the Midshipmen on an 81-yard drive that was capped by Matt Harmon's 27-yard field goal early in the second quarter.
Nearly nine minutes later, Dobbs finished a 10-play, 85-yard second quarter drive with a one-yard touchdown run.
In the third quarter, Navy safety Emmett Merchant picked off a pass from Northern Illinois' Chandler Harnish and returned it 29 yards into Huskies territory. Ten plays later, Navy went up 16-0 on Eric Kettani's one-yard TD run with 2:21 remaining in the period.
Kettani rushed for 92 yards on 19 carries, and Harnish led Northern Illinois with 14 carries for 65 yards. He was 14-of-24 for 116 yards passing.
The Midshipmen clinched a winning season with two games to play, including the annual showdown with Army on Dec. 6 in Philadelphia. Navy will also play in the inaugural EagleBank Bowl on Dec. 20 in Washington D.C.
Northern Illinois' slim bowl hopes were dashed with the loss.