Sprint Football Hosts Cornell in Home Finale
Senior Vince DeBenedetti
Oct. 27, 2011
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Navy will put its perfect record on the line on Friday when it hosts Cornell in its home finale at 7 p.m. at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Navy is 5-0 on the season and 4-0 in the CSFL, while Cornell enters the contest with an overall and conference record of 2-3.
Admission to Friday's game is free.
Friday's game will be the first for Navy since Oct. 8...the Midshipmen had a bye two weeks ago and last week's opponent, Princeton, was forced to forfeit due to mounting injuries.
Navy remains the only unbeaten team in the Collegiate Sprint Football League.
Navy leads the all-time series with Cornell, 51-13-2 (.788), and has been victorious in 12 of the last 13 meetings. Last year in Ithaca, N.Y., Navy took a 24-0 lead in the third quarter and defeated the Big Red, 31-12.
Navy has out-rushed opponents by a staggering margin of 1130-112 this season...Navy is averaging 282.5 yards per game on the ground, well above its league-leading average of 197.3 in 2010.
Sophomore running back David Williams leads the league in rushing with a total of 687 yards on 91 carries (7.5 avg.)...Williams has rushed for more yards than any other Midshipman since 1997 when Matt Sobecki set the Navy record with 984 yards on 165 carries (6.0 avg.).
Navy is 14-of-17 in the red zone this season and has scored touchdowns on 12 of its trips inside the 20-yard line.
Navy has held opponents to 14-of-69 (20%) on third downs this season, while the Mids have gone 24-of-60 (40%).
The Mids have started fast this season, outscoring opponents 34-0 in the first quarter...Navy scored touchdowns on each of its first two possessions against both Penn and Post.
In registering back-to-back shutout wins over Penn and Post, Navy has now recorded two consecutive shutouts in each of the last three seasons.
The league-leading Navy defense has yielded a total of just 789 yards (197.2 yards per game). While the entire defense has been impressive, it has been the Mids' rushing defense that has been the most dominant - allowing a total of just 112 yards (28.0 yards per game). Opponents are averaging a miniscule 0.9 yards per carry.
Navy led the CSFL in defense last season, allowing an average of 184 total yards per game.
Sophomore David Williams has racked up a total of 687 rushing yards on 91 carries (7.5 avg.) so far this season.
His six rushing touchdowns are tied for tops in the league, while his total of eight TDs this season are the most by a Mid since Richard Engel had nine in 2006.
Williams' 687 yards are the most by a Midshipman since Matt Sobecki set the Navy record for rushing yards in a season with 984 in 1997.
Starting Strong, Finishing Strong
A major key to Navy's success this season has been its ability to score both early and late in games. The Midshipmen have outscored opponents, 34-0, in the first quarters of games this season. Equally as impressive, the Mids have been able to put teams away by outscoring opponents, 51-6, in final quarter.
Prior to Friday's game, Navy will recognize its 12 seniors who will be appearing in their final home game in Annapolis. This year's senior class includes: Vince DeBenedetti, Nick Dominguez, Erik Erlandson, Sean Fergerson, Jordan Foley, Ryan Hilgendorf, T.J. Leonard, Marty Meehan, Drew Presnell, Zzmarr Stone, Dan Sullivan and Matt Williams.
Rushing - David Williams (91 carries, 687 yards, 7.5 avg., 6 TDs)
Passing - Lewis Correale (28 of 58, 297 yards, 4 TDs, 3 INTs)
Receiving - Drew Presnell (13 catches, 139 yards, 10.7 avg., 1 TD)
Tackles - T.J. Leonard (25 tackles, 15 solos, 10 assists)
Rushing - Douglas Famularo (61 carries, 206 yards, 3.4 avg., 2 TDs)
Passing - Brendan Miller (79 of 141, 1095 yards, 11TDs, 2 INTs)
Receiving - Abe Mellinger (24 catches, 489 yards, 20.4 avg., 7 TD)
Tackles - Tim Dooley (36 tackles, 20 solo, 16 assists, 4.0 TFL)
Defensive back Brendan West and running back David Williams have both returned punts for touchdowns this season. West returned an unblocked punt 48 yards for touchdown in Navy's win over Penn.
Williams had Navy's first punt return for a touchdown this season when he blocked and Army punt and returned it six yards for a score in the season-opening game.
This season marks the first time since 2002 that Navy has returned two punts for touchdowns.
Last Time Out: Navy 30, Mansfield 19
In winning by forfeit over Princeton last week, Navy's last outing occurred on Oct. 8 at Mansfield where it scored the game's final 23 points to rally from a 19-7 third-quarter deficit win, 30-19.
After an Adrian Montecinos field goal and a David Williams TD reception, Navy completed the comeback and took the lead for good when Marty Meehan plunged into the end zone from three yards out with just over five minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.
Samuel Gedeon sealed the victory with a 40-yard interception return for a touchdown just over a minute later.
Foley Sets Punt Return Mark
With a career total of 613 punt-return yards, senior Jordan Foley is Navy's all-time leader in the category. Last season, Foley also set the single-season mark for kick return yards with 259 and currently has a career total of 422.
Trevor Garabedian-Prophet (2002-05) holds the Navy kick-return yardage record with 657.
The Mids will play their final game of the season when they travel to West Point, N.Y., to face Army in the annual Star Game on Nov. 4 at 7 p.m.