12/6/2003 - Football
Navy 34, Army 6
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Kyle Eckel rushed for 152 yards and two
touchdowns, helping the Navy Midshipmen record a 34-6 victory over the Army Black Knights and capture the Commander in Chief's Trophy in the 104th meeting of America's Classic from Lincoln Financial Field.
Craig Candeto completed 4-of-9 pass attempts for 55 yards and rushed for 68 yards off of 18 carries, as Navy (8-4) finished the regular season winning two of its last three games.
Eric Roberts had only 38 rushing yards for the Midshipmen, but was able to find the endzone twice and lead the team in receiving with two catches for 31 yards.
Eckel and Candeto became the first tandem in Navy history to go over 1,000 yards rushing each in the same season. Candeto has rushed for 1,022 yards, while Eckel has rushed for 1,178 yards via the ground.
Zac Dahman passed for 115 yards and threw two interceptions, pacing the Black Knights (0-13) in their 15th straight defeat, which is the nation's longest current losing streak. Carlton Jones registered Army's only score of the game, while rushing for a team-high 39 yards off of 16 carries.
Army became the first team in Division I history to finish the year with an
0-13 record and has now dropped 24 of its last 25 tilts and four of its last
five to Navy.
The Midshipmen wasted no time putting points on the board, scoring on their first drive of the game with a one-yard touchdown run by Roberts. The Black Knights stopped Navy twice at the goal line before Roberts went in untouched, as the drive was marked by 14 straight running plays for the Midshipmen.
Army answered with its lone score near the start of the second quarter, as Jones was able to find the end-zone on a one-yard run. The Black Knights however botched the extra-point attempt when the holder was unable to secure the snap, allowing the Midshipmen to still have a 7-6 advantage.
Navy extended its lead to four points near the end of the second period when Eric Rolfs nailed a 38-yard field goal for the Midshipmen.
Rolfs registered his second field goal of the quarter with 27 seconds
remaining in the second period, this one coming from 41 yards away and
gave the Midshipmen a 13-6 lead heading into the locker room.
Navy came out of the break firing and scored 21 unanswered points, starting with Roberts registering his second touchdown of the contest on a two-yard scoring run with 5:11 left in the third quarter. It was the opening drive of the second half for the Midshipmen, who marched down the field 80 yards for the score.
The Midshipmen tacked on 14 more points when Eckel scored back-to-back touchdowns in the fourth quarter, including a 16-yard run and then a 12-yard scoring scamper, giving Navy its decisive 28-point victory.
Game Notes: This was the first time that this rivalry was played at Lincoln Financial Field, but marked the return for the annual matchup to Philadelphia, which has now been the site of America's Classic 77 times in history...Last year's contest was played in East Rutherford, when Navy came away with a lopsided 58-12 victory...Despite the victory, Navy still trails the Black Knights by one game in the all-time series standings, 48-49-7...The Midshipmen, who had their first winning season since 1997, have already accepted a bid to appear in the Houston Bowl against an undetermined opponent.