Mids quickly dismiss Temple in home finale

Up by 35 at half, Navy rolls to 3rd straight win

Navy 42 Temple 6

November 19, 2006|By Gary Lambrecht | Gary Lambrecht,Sun Reporter

In its previous two lopsided victories this month, Navy pretty much ended any suspense by halftime. Yesterday, on Senior Day against hapless Temple, the Midshipmen didn't even wait that long.

Showing no signs of looking ahead to their upcoming clash with Army, the Midshipmen completed a spotless November with their best home performance of the season by knocking out Temple early, then cruising to a 42-6 blowout before 33,927 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.

On paper, the nation's top-ranked rushing offense figured to own the worst rushing defense in Division I-A, and Navy (8-3) won its third straight by wasting no time asserting its triple option attack and its defense. With sophomore quarterback Kaipo-Noa Kaheaku-Enhada setting the tone, the Mids scored 28 points before Temple (1-11) had gained a first down and rolled to a 35-0 lead at the half.

Kaheaku-Enhada scored the game's first two touchdowns in the first quarter and finished with 140 of Navy's 420 rushing yards. And when he wasn't slipping through gaping holes in the Temple defense, he was pitching to slotbacks Reggie Campbell and Shun White for large chunks of yardage.

White, a 5-foot-9 sophomore, had the most fun. He rushed for a career-high 114 yards on seven carries and had his first two-touchdown day. His 11-yard run made it 21-0 early in the second quarter, and his 50-yard dash ended the day's scoring with 12:42 left in the game.

"Before [the game] in the locker room, I went around and shook all of the seniors' hands and I told them I'm going to do this for you," White said. "That's all I had in my mind the whole time. It's for the seniors."

The seniors made their last stand in Annapolis a fulfilling one. After going 2-2 at home before yesterday and winning two games by a combined six points, Navy made the Owls pay. While surrendering their lowest scoring output of the season, the Mids sacked Temple quarterbacks Adam DiMichele and Vaughn Charlton three times each and allowed only 9 rushing yards and five first downs in the first half.

Senior linebacker Rob Caldwell led the way with 11 tackles, and sophomore linebacker Clint Sovie had seven. Senior defensive end Tye Adams had five tackles and two sacks. Even the second-team defense got into the act by making a late goal-line stand.

"We'd played some of our best football of the year on the road, which is nice, because road games are a little more difficult," senior linebacker Tyler Tidwell said. "But it had been disappointing to us because we kind of make that a staple of our program - making Navy-Marine Corps [Memorial Stadium] a difficult place to play. And we had gotten away from that a little bit this year."

The Mids fixed that problem in a hurry. After forcing a Temple punt on the Owls' opening possession, they drove 77 yards in nine plays. Kaheaku-Enhada capped it by rolling left, cutting back and jogging into the end zone to complete an 8-yard scoring run. Two possessions later, White's 26-yard scamper down the right sideline set up Kaheaku-Enhada's 3-yard touchdown run, making it 14-0 with 1:12 left in the first quarter.

And the rout was on.

"If we learned anything from this game, it's that Navy has the model of how not to lose games," said Temple coach Al Golden, whose Owls open the 2007 season against the Mids in Philadelphia. "This better be a good learning tool for this team. I told these guys Navy isn't going anywhere."

Said Navy coach Paul Johnson: "We came out in the first half and started the game in a way I had hoped we would. We had focus and intensity and got off to a great start and really had things going our way.

"We talked about trying to come out and finish, but I think we clearly lost focus in the third quarter there a little bit. But, all in all, 42 is more than 6, and I'm happy that our seniors went out that way, and [now we can] get ready for the biggest game of the year in two weeks."

That would be the 107th meeting between Army and Navy on Dec. 2 in Philadelphia, where Navy will try to win its fourth straight Commander in Chief's Trophy for the first time in school history. The senior class has a chance to finish 8-0 against service academies. That also has never been done at Navy.gary.lambrecht@baltsun.com

Play it again

A summary of Navy's 42-6 victory over Temple:

What went right -- The Midshipmen made it to Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on time and in one piece before toying with one of the worst teams in the country.

What went wrong -- Navy lost some steam in the second half after taking a 35-0 lead into the break. The Mids had only five first downs in the second half.

Defining moments -- Navy forced punts on Temple's first four possessions and scored on three of its first four possessions to take a 21-0 lead. Ballgame.

What it means -- Navy finished November by crushing the teams it was supposed to handle with ease. The Mids averaged 43 points in routs over Duke, Eastern Michigan and Temple, which have a combined record of 2-32.

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