Saturday, October 24, 2009

Navy Defeats Wake Forest in a Downpour

Navy Defeats Wake Forest in a Downpour
By Trevor Replogle

Annapolis, MD – Coming into Saturday’s Homecoming game, the Navy Midshipmen were fifth in the county in rushing averaging 279 yards per game. Navy hoped to continue that streak without the service of starting quarterback Ricky Dobbs. Dobbs was injured in last week’s overtime victory against SMU.

Wake Forest was coming off a tough ACC loss at Clemson last week 38-3. The Demon Deacons have relied heavily on the arm of their career passing leader, Riley Skinner.

Kriss Proctor stepped in admirably for Dobbs and led the Navy offense to a 13-10 win over Wake Forest in front of 31,907 fans. The Navy rushing attack pounded out 338 yards on 64 carries on a wet turf and Proctor didn’t attempt a pass in the game. It was exactly 364 days since Navy won a game without attempting a pass against SMU during the 2008 season.

It appeared early that the game would be decided by the feet of each team’s kicker. The Mids got on the board first when Joe Buckley capped off a 7-play, 29-yard drive with a wind-aided 50 yard field goal. True to form, Navy has won 36 of their last 39 games when scoring first.

Jimmy Newman got Wake Forest on the board early in the second quarter with a 40-yard field goal of his own.

The kicking battle continued on the ensuing drive. Navy started on their own 20 and used 11 straight rushes to move deep into Wake Forest territory. The drive stalled and Buckley showed his poise when he connected on a 40-yard field goal, this time into the wind.

Buckley wasn’t the only kicker that had success for Navy. Punter Kyle Delahooke set two career-high marks on the day. He nailed a 65-yard punt in the first quarter and then boomed a 68-yard kick in the fourth.

On Wake Forest’s second possession of the second quarter a torrential downpour started that wouldn’t let up for the remainder of the game. The weather appeared to favor the running-focused Midshipmen and hampered the aerial attack of the Demon Deacons.

Proctor put the game out of reach with Navy’s first drive of the second half. After pounding the Wake defense with six carries from fullback Vince Murray, Proctor showed some nifty moves of his own with a 40 yard scamper into the end zone. The score gave Navy a commanding 13-3 lead.

Skinner finally found pay dirt midway through the fourth quarter when he connected with Devon Brown for a 15-yard touchdown completion, cutting the Mids lead to three.

Wake’s defense was unable to stop the Midshipmen running attack late in the game and the Mids were able to run out the clock.

Vince Murray finished the game with 175 yards on 27 carries, his second straight 100 yard game. Kriss Proctor finished with 96 yards and one touchdown.

Riley Skinner finished the day with 173 yards passing on 25 attempts and one touchdown. He was sacked three times.

Navy hosts Temple next week at Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. With a win the Mids will be bowl-bound. They have accepted an invite to the Texas Bowl once they become bowl eligible.

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