Saturday, October 24, 2020

Midshipmen fall to Houston, 37-21

 

Game Summary - Houston travelled to Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium today and came away with a 37-21 win over Navy.  The Midshipmen were coming off two big AAC wins but couldn't contain a powerful Houston offense.  Clayton Tune led the Houston offense completing 24 of his 34 pass attempts for 316 yards and 3 touchdowns.  His leading receiver was Marquez Stevenson who had 9 receptions for 129 yards and 2 scores.  Dalen Morris led Navy with 206 yards passing and 2 touchdowns.  The Navy rushing attack was held to just 166 yards.  Navy's fullbacks (Nelson Smith and Jamale Carothers) were held to just 22 yards in the first half and 64 yards in the game.  Navy is now 3-3 and 2-1 in the AAC and will travel to SMU next Saturday.

Pointless fact - Navy lost today's coin toss and is now 0-6 on the year.  Thankfully their record is better than  that.

Dalen Morris
Great Answer - Navy came into today's game a nearly two touchdown underdog.  The Cougars took an early 3-0 lead on their second drive of the game.  The Midshipmen realized that playing catchup football  against Houston was a recipe for disaster.  On the Mids' ensuing drive, they used all three timeouts for the first half.  On their third TO, Navy was facing a 3rd-and-10 on the Houston 49 yard line.  Offensive Coordinator called a pass play and Dalen Morris connected with Mychal Cooper for a 41-yard completion to the Houston 8.  Two plays later, Morris called his own number and put Navy in the lead with a 6-yard touchdown run.

Pitch and Catch - Navy is well known for it's hard-nosed, time-consuming running game.  With this year's starting quarterback, Dalen Morris, the Mids also have an effective passing game.  With Navy trailing Houston, 9-7, Morris connected with Ryan Mitchell for a career-long, 60-yard TD pass to give Navy the lead in the game.

Lightning in a Bottle - With Navy holding a close 13-9 lead with 2:37 left in the half, Houston's QB, Clayton Tune went to work.  Tune connected with Nathaniel Dell and Kyle porter for completions of 13 and 15 yards respectively.  On the next play, Tune found Marquez Stevenson for a 51-yard TD and a 16-13 lead.

Kicking Game Battle - The kicking game played a huge factor in today's game.  Navy's Bijan Nichols,

Dalton Witherspoon 
who has been a reliable and accurate kicker for the Mids was 0-2 on field goal attempts of 35 and 41 yards.  Nichols also had a PAT blocked in the first half.  On the other sideline, Houston's Dalton Witherspoon was money all afternoon.  Witherspoon connected on all three of his field goal attempts in the game.  He was successful on 33, 45, and a career-high 53 yard field goals and was also 3-3 on PATs.  The Cougars outscored Navy in the kicking game, 12-1.

Playing with a Short Field - Houston was able to turn positive field position into 16 points during today's game.  Four of the first five scoring drives for the Cougars were 39 yards or less.  Houston connected on three field goals and a touchdown.

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