Another week, another win. The Navy Midshipmen advanced to 7-1 with their convincing 56-10 win over the UConn Huskies. The victory also improved Navy’s conference record to 5-1. The Midshipmen remain in second place in the heated AAC West division as well. However, things can get interesting today as the other two competitive teams in the division, SMU and Memphis, face off against each other.
Ah, yes. A recap of the game against UConn.
Slow start turned wide open
It started off with a monster, 58-yard touchdown run by Navy’s star quarterback, Malcolm Perry, on their first drive of the game. However, UConn responded quickly with a nice drive ending in a 10-yard touchdown pass by freshman quarterback Jack Zergiotis. On the day, Zergiotis struggled; however at times, he should the potential that he could be dangerous in the upcoming years for the Huskies.
The Midshipmen and the Huskies swapped scores one more time with Jamale Carothers scoring a rushing touchdown for Navy and Clayton Harris knocking in a field goal for UConn. This made the score 14-10 in the middle of the second quarter.
Here was the moment when the wheels really started to fall off for the Huskies.
Zergiotis threw a pass that hit a Navy defensive lineman square in the hands but was dropped. The very next play, the young quarterback did it again! But this time, Jackson Perkins wasn’t making the same mistake. Perkins was in his first game back after missing a handful of weeks. The very next play, Perry hit Mychal Cooper perfectly in stride for a 58-yard touchdown.
The first half ended shortly after UConn got the ball back and Zergiotis fumbled on the goal line. Navy had all the momentum and you couldn’t help but feel a little bit badly for the guy.
The second half began with punts from each team on their opening drives. But after that, Navy scored touchdowns on the next four possessions to close out the game. Connecticut did score at all.
Although the second half was all about Perry executing the triple-option offense with ease, and Jamale Carothers adding to his touchdown total with two more (three on the day), what was most encouraging for many Navy fans who watched until the end was the eight minute drive in the fourth quarter that ended in a touchdown by back-up freshman quarterback, Perry Olsen. The Midshipmen are filled with young talent that makes many fans quite excited for the future of the program.
The Midshipmen are in a really good place right now. They have 15 full days until they have to travel to Notre Dame, while the Irish have two games between now and then. Additionally, Navy has a fair shot at the AAC Championship and to represent the Group of 5s in a New Year’s Six Bowl. Of course, there’s a ton that would need to fall in place for all that to happen. Ultimately, there’s still a chance despite that pesky loss to Memphis earlier this season.
Coach Ken Niumatalolo will look to regroup and rejuvenate his team as they prepare to take on the toughest opponent they will face all year in the Fighting Irish. The odds are low, but I believe in this team and believe they can win the rest of their regular season games.