- The Washington Times - Sunday, October 26, 2003

ANNAPOLIS — A horrendous traffic jam and the rare sight of people begging for tickets preceded Navy’s first home sellout since 1999.

It couldn’t have been a better scenario for the resurgent Midshipmen, who were eager to improve upon their best start in seven years.

Delaware did its part by falling behind 14-0 in the first quarter, but that’s where the fun ended for most of the 34,982 fans celebrating homecoming at Navy-Marine Corps Stadium.

Germaine Bennett ran for 81 yards and scored the tiebreaking touchdown in the third quarter as unbeaten Delaware rallied to upset the Midshipmen 21-17 yesterday.

The Division I-AA Blue Hens (8-0) allowed touchdowns on Navy’s first two possessions before rebounding for their first win against a I-A team since 1992 — a 37-21 victory over Navy.

“Playing a Division-I team, you feel like it’s an uphill battle,” Delaware quarterback Andy Hall said. “For us to come out of this with a win, it’s really a big boost for us.”

The Midshipmen (5-3) came in leading the nation with 321.3 yards rushing a game, but could muster only 180 yards on the ground against the Blue Hens.

The defense allowed 188 yards rushing and 84 more through the air.

“We didn’t get the job done,” linebacker Eddie Carthan said. “They ran the ball down our throat and threw it all over us.”

After getting the ball on its own 21 with no timeouts and 1:28 left, Navy drove to the Delaware 14 before Dave Camburn batted away an end-zone pass by Navy’s Craig Candeto on the final play.

“There’s no excuse for us to come out and play the way we did today,” Candeto said. “This is a big hurt for us.”

Candeto ran for 62 yards and threw for 201 yards and a touchdown, but he lost a fumble and threw an interception as Navy’s three-game winning streak came to an end.

“Delaware is good football team, and they didn’t need our help,” Navy coach Paul Johnson said.

Bennett capped Delaware’s opening possession of the second half with a 28-yard touchdown run for a 21-14 lead. The fourth-down play came four plays after Bennett got 5 yards on a fourth-down run.

The Blue Hens then recovered a fumble in Navy territory, but the threat ended when Carthan intercepted a tipped pass near the goal line.

A field goal by Eric Rolfs made it 21-17 with 10:49 to go, but that would be Navy’s only points in the final 52 minutes.

“I think we got on a high horse,” Carthan said, “and this brought us back down.”

After Navy scored two touchdowns in the span of 68 seconds to go up 14-0 midway through the first quarter, the Blue Hens took advantage of two turnovers by Candeto to pull even at halftime.

Delaware went three-and-out after taking the opening kickoff, the first time in seven games the Blue Hens failed to score on their initial possession.

Navy then moved 63 yards in 10 plays, all of them runs, including a 1-yard touchdown by Tony Lane.

The Midshipmen needed only one snap to reach the end zone on their next possession. Eric Roberts slipped behind the Delaware secondary, grabbed a short pass over the middle and scored on the 66-yard play.

The Blue Hens responded with a 16-play drive kept alive by Sean Bleiler’s 24-yard run on a fake punt. Antawn Jenkins capped the march with a 1-yard run on the first play of the second quarter.

cCincinnati 33, Army 29: In Cincinnati, Richard Hall ran for 123 yards and two touchdowns as the Bearcats (4-3, 2-2 C-USA) handed the Black Knights (0-8, 0-6) their 10th straight loss. Army has the longest winless stretch in Division I-A after Buffalo snapped its 18-game skid with a win over Ohio.

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