Saturday, November 09, 2013

Keenan Reynolds Leads Navy over Hawaii

Keenan Reynolds
On a crisp fall afternoon in Annapolis, Navy's star quarterback, Keenan Reynolds rushed for 236 yards on 28 carries and scored four touchdowns leading Navy to a 42-28 win over Hawai'i.

Hawai'i was in the midst of a 10-day road trip that led to today's first-ever match-up between schools with head coaches of Polynesian decent.  The game was also significant as Navy's head coach, Ken Niumatalolo is a graduate of the University of Hawai'i, as is Navy's offensive coordinator Ivin Jasper.

Hawai'i's Norm Chow, who became head coach in 2012 followed Navy's Niumatalolo who became only the second Polynesian head coach when he was hired by Navy in 2009.

Hawai'i's road trip, which concluded this evening in Annapolis began at Utah State last week.  The team will travel over 9,800 miles and will have been away from the island for 10 days, which may partially explain their difficulty in stopping Reynolds.

The Midshipmen needed every one of Reynolds' yards and TDs to hold off a scrappy, although winless Hawai'i team.

The Rainbow Warriors' offense was effective on the afternoon as well.  Junior fullback, Joey Iosefa let the UH running attack with 192 yards on 35 carries (tied a school record).  Not to be outdone, Hawai'i's senior signal caller, Sean Schroeder threw for 246 yards and connected for three TDs.

But the afternoon belonged to Reynolds.  Reynolds was responsible for five touchdowns during the game (four rushing, one passing) and put points on the board in each quarter.

The Mids and their counterparts from the Pacific were tied 14-14 at halftime, despite Hawai'i's kicker missing two field goals wide left in the first half.

Quinton Singleton was able to put the first points on the board for Navy in the second half.  Singleton, who finished with 93 yards, put the Mids in the lead for good with a 12-yard run to cap off an 11-play, 70-yard scoring drive.  Nick Sloan, who was a perfect 5-5 on PATs, kicked the extra point to put Navy up 21-14.

Reynold's scored his second TD of the game on Navy's next possession and just missed scoring his third on their ensuing drive.  Reynolds cut inside from the one yard line not seeing that there was a seam outside the left tackle.

Hawai'i drove 99 yards after holding Navy and Iosefa scored his only TD of the game to cap off the drive.

Jasper and Niumatalolo both got on Reynolds for not scoring from the one yard line and Reynolds felt he had to redeem himself - and on the next drive he did just that.  Reynolds got great blocking on the right side and sprinted 67 yards to the end zone giving Navy a 35-21 lead.

The teams traded touchdowns and Navy earned their fifth win of the year and Niumatalolo earned his 45th as a head coach - moving him into a tie with Paul Johnson for third on Navy's career wins list.

Navy has three more chances to get win number six to become bowl eligible - South Alabama on November 16, at San Jose State on November 22, and against Army on December 14.

Navy has already clinched the Commander-in-Chief's trophy when Air Force beat Army last week.