- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 23, 2001

BC 38, NAVY 21

ANNAPOLIS After Boston College's 38-21 victory over Navy yesterday, both teams embraced at midfield and sang "God Bless America."

The patriotic display culminated a not-so normal day for the players, coaches and 30,064 fans at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Heavy security, which included metal detectors, prevented many from entering until midway through the first quarter, and armed guards were perched atop the scoreboard in the north end zone.

The variations did not just lie off the field. Navy looked like an entirely different team from the one that was outscored 115-33 in its first two games. Led by senior quarterback Brian Madden, who started for the first time since Dec. 4, 1999, after missing all of last season with a right knee injury and the first two games of this season because of a violation of academy rules, Navy scored a touchdown on the game's opening drive and held a lead for the first time this season.

Madden rushed for 106 yards on 32 carries, his sixth straight 100-yard rushing game. The 220-pound Oklahoma native punished the Boston College defense, falling forward and running through would-be tacklers. Madden said his knee, which was operated on four times, felt great.

Navy's rushing attack was exponentially better than the previous two games. Slotback Gene Reese had been the Mids' leading rusher entering the game with 28 yards, and Madden surpassed that total with 7:16 to play in the first quarter.

In addition to his running prowess, Madden looked good through the air, though he threw two interceptions. He finished with 124 yards passing the first 100-yard passing game of his career which included a 49-yard touchdown strike to Jeff Gaddy on the game's initial drive.

"[Madden] almost led them to a win over Notre Dame a couple of years ago," said Boston College coach Tom O'Brien, who is a class of '71 Navy graduate and a classmate of Charles "Chick" Burlingame, who was the pilot of United flight 77, which crashed into the Pentagon. "[Madden] is a big, powerful man. Their offense is effective when you have a great quarterback."

Said Gaddy: "Brian brings a command presence to the huddle. He brings a high intensity to us. When he puts the ball where he puts it, you can't argue with that."

Although the Mids' offense made great strides yesterday, their defense did not. It was unable to make a play when needed, and the Eagles capitalized on 10 of 15 third downs. The game was tied at 14-14 after Madden led the Mids on an 80-yard drive, but the Eagles scored two touchdowns in the final 7? minutes of the first half to take a 28-14 lead into halftime.

Boston College extended the lead to 35-14 before Navy scored a touchdown less than 2 minutes into the fourth quarter on a eight-yard run by Tony Lane. The Eagles were led by tailback William Green (33 carries, 178 yards) and quarterback Brian St. Pierre (19-for-25, 247 yards).

The traditional flyover took place before the game, but the three F-5 jets flew in "missing man formation" to honor the 14 Naval Academy graduates and six Boston College graduates who are missing or confirmed dead following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. After the flyover, Dan Ryno and Mike Chiesl led the Midshipmen onto the field while hoisting the American flag, the first time in Navy history that has been done.

"I think it was a great moment for everybody," Navy senior linebacker Ryan Hamilton said. "It's something that had to be done. We take great pride, and that's what we're here for."

"The focus should shift off of us and onto the people who are in the fleet and the people involved in the rescue mission," Hamilton said. "We are just a bunch of kids playing football."

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide