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Worth scores five TDs in Mids win over Memphis

Will Worth had the first 200-yard rushing performance for Navy since Keenan Reynolds in 2014.

Will Worth had the first 200-yard rushing performance for Navy since Keenan Reynolds in 2014.

Maybe there was a brief period time early in the season when Will Worth had to play quarterback after the injury to Tago Smth, but now there is nothing but praise to be sung as he’s led the Navy football team to a national raking, that should increased with their latest 42-28 victory over Memphis on Saturday.

Worth scored five touchdowns and led the Mids with 201 yards on the ground. Navy’s win was their first since gaining the No. 24 ranking two weeks ago, but the time off did not at all seem to hurt the squad as they rushed for 447 yards in the game and four touchdowns. Worth ran the ball into the endzone three times.

“We take what we can get, and today, the quarterback run game was there,” Worth said. “We could manage that and set up couple of pass play to be able to score thrugh the air. It’s just executing the game plan.”

Memphis actually had the advantage in the first quarter. Riley Ferguson capped off a seven-play, 75-yard drive with a 33-yard touchdown pass to Anthony Miller. The Mids responded with a drive, taking advantage of a kick-off out of bound by Memphis that set hem up on the 35-yard line.

Navy stuck to the ground exclusively to get their ensuing drive and pushed their way down the field for a response touchdown. Shawn White got the ball in the endzone with a four-yard run.

But Navy’s special team’s made a mistake on the coverage of the ensuing kickoff and allowed Tony Pollard to return the ball 100 yards for a touchdown. A big kickoff return in the first half was one of the key plays for Navy in their upset of Houston two weeks ago, but Navy responded with a touchdown of their own.

Once again, as usual, the Mids used the ground to move the ball up the field exclusively, but with the Tigers defense sneaking up, Worth hit Jamir Tillman for a 15-yard touchdown pass. That was it for both teams for an extended period time, but finally at the end of the first half Worth gained 53 yards on the ground on the Mids final drive of the first half and ended it in the endzone to give them a 21-14 lead.

That jolt at the end of the first half was key and Navy used that momentum in the second half though into the second half.

Navy opened the second half with a 75-yard touchdown drive. Navy executed their triple-option to perfection with six different players running the ball. Worth capped off the drive with a four-yard run to give the Mids a 28-14 lead.

The Tigers continued to push Navy, however and on the ensuing drive, Ferguson had three long passes on third down to continue Memphis’ drive. The big one was a 17-yard pass to Daniel Hurd on third-and-eight. That got the Tigers into at least field goal range. However, the kept on moving forward and Ferguson completed another pass to Hurd for a touchdown to cut Navy’s lead down to just one score.

But the Mids wouldn’t let up either. Another possession featuring a variety of runners took the Mids 75 yards and Worth took advantage of the Tigers defense cheating up again with an 18-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Carmona, once again putting the Mids ahead by two touchdowns.

Going into the fourth quarter ahead by two touchdowns at huge for Navy. As a team with the capability of grinding down the clock with their running game, they gave Memphis no room for error. The Tigers did score once more after a Navy three-and-out that featured Patrick Taylor run into the endzone from seven yards and had everything going their way when Bennett Moehring bounced a kick off the post. However, the error game for Memphis that they could not afford. Facing third-and-eight from the 35 yard line, Ferguson hit Roderick Proctor for the first down, but he fumbled the ball and Tayler Sayles recovered it to give it back to the Mids with less than four minutes left.

Worth quickly got into the endzone to push Navy ahead by another two scores with fie-straight rushes for 43 yards, including a 27-yard run on the second play of the drive. He became the first Mid to rush for 200 yards in a game since Keenan Reynolds in 2014.

Memphis got the ball back at the two-minute warning and with no other choice but to air out the ball, the Mids were ready and shut the drive down.

Navy will have another big conference game on Friday when they travel to face AAC East Division co-leader South Florida.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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