Saturday, September 30, 2023

Navy Falls to South Florida, 44-30

The Navy Midshipmen jumped out to an early 14-0 lead at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium against South Florida behind two rushing touchdowns by Navy's starting quarterback, Tai Lavatai. Lavatai scored on runs of 1 and four yards on back-to-back drives. The two drives totaled only 48 yards. 

South Florida bounced back and took control of the game behind sophomore quarterback, Byrum Brown.  Brown connected on two touchdown passes to Sean Atkins for one and 88 yards.  A rushing touchdown by Nay'Quan Wright from 10 yards out gave the Bulls the lead that they would not give up.  South Florida outplayed the Midshipmen on both sides of the ball and went home with a 44-30 win. 

Play of the game: Navy quarterback, Blake Horvath completed a short 2-yard touchdown pass to Anton Hall with 1:57 remaining in the first half. The score cut the South Florida lead to 21-20. On Navy’s PAT attempt, the snap was fumbled and recovered by Jhalyn Shuler who returned the ball for a two-point score for the Bulls, maintaining the lead 23-20. 

Player of the game: Byrum Brown completed 26 of 34 passes with three touchdowns. One of the scores was an 88-yard completion to Sean Atkins. The 88-yard touchdown was the longest touchdown pass against the Navy defense since 2017 when Florida Atlantic completed a 95 yarder against the Mids. 

Unsung heroes: Senior Striker Xavier McDonald recorded a career-high 7 tackles in the game including 2 sacks. He also forced two fumbles and recovered one. Will Harbour, a senior linebacker, had a career high 11 tackles. He also had a sack, 1.5 tackles for a loss, and a quarterback hurry. 

A day of firsts: Sophomore slotback Eli Heidenreich caught a 68-yard pass from Blake Horvath for his first career touchdown. The reception was the longest for Navy since 2020. 

South Florida Head Coach Alex Golesh: “I am super excited for our kids. It wasn’t pretty initially, but they kept swinging and swinging and swinging. The guys are resilient and it is showing in their play.” 

Navy Head Coach Brian Newberry: “Our margin for error is small. We can’t beat ourselves and I thought we did that today.” 

Records: Navy fell to 1-3 and South Florida improved to 3-2. 

Next week: The Midshipmen host North Texas and South Florida travels to Alabama Birmingham. 

Saturday, September 09, 2023

Navy vs. Wagner

Game Update - The plan is for a 3:53 kickoff if there is no more lightning.  There will be no march-on.

Game Update - The Navy-Wagner game is currently on a weather delay.  The march-on of the Midshipmen has been cancelled.

Pre-game - 

Navy (0-1) will host Wagner (0-1) at Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in the home opener for the Midshipmen.  Navy is looking to rebound from the season opening loss to Notre Dame in Ireland.  Wagner is also looking to get their first win of the season after falling to Fordham last week, 46-16.  This game will be Coach Brian Newberry's home opener as well.  Newberry was hired to replace former Navy coach, Ken Niumatalolo.