Rutgers 30, Army 3
Army Postgame Notes
PISCATAWAY, N.J. Rutgers’ quarterback Mike Teel threw for 359 yards and one touchdown to lead the Scarlet Knights to a 30-3 victory over Army Saturday afternoon in front of 42,212 fans at a cold and breezy Rutgers Stadium.
The loss was the Black Knights’ third straight and dropped their record to 3-8. The Scarlet Knights have now won five straight and improved to 6-5 on the season.
Army senior FB Collin Mooney posted his fifth 100-yard rushing day of the season, gaining 112 yards on 20 carries. Mooney moved into a tie for fifth place on Army’s single-season 100-yard games list. He jumped to second place on the Black Knights’ single-season rushing yardage list, improving his season total to 1,285 yards. Mooney will enter his final game against Navy needing only 54 yards to break Mike Mayweather’s standard of 1,338 set in 1990.
Sophomore QB Chip Bowden ran 21 times for 83 yards and completed two of his four pass attempts for two yards. Junior WR Damion Hunter was on the receiving end of both completions.
Teel completed 33 of 23 throws on the day. RU receiver Kenny Britt caught 10 passes for a career-high 197 yards. Shamar Graves was one of four other Scarlet Knights to catch at least two passes, finishing with 42 yards and a score. Joe Martinek was the squad’s leading rusher with 53 yards on nine carries, while receiver Tim Brown scored via the rush with a 19-yard scamper.
The Scarlet Knights outgained Army, 521-219. It was the most yards allowed by an Army opponent this season and the most since Tulsa gained 622 at Michie Stadium last season. It was the Black Knights’ lowest offensive output of the 2008 campaign. Army held a 217-162 advantage on the ground, topping the 200-yard mark for the eighth time in 11 games.
Senior LB Frank Scappaticci led the Army defense with 12 tackles. Sophomore LB Stephen Anderson notched nine tackles, including 1.5 for loss. Anderson forced two fumbles to run his season total to an Academy-record tying five. Anderson now shares the mark with Lyle Weaver who forced five fumbles in 1999 (forced fumbles have been kept since 1971). Freshman CB Antuan Aaron had a career-best nine stops, while junior DT had eight tackles, two of which were behind the line of scrimmage.
Kevin Malast led the Rutgers’ stop unit with nine tackles. Joe Lefeged had eight tackles and recovered two fumbles, including one for a 58-yard touchdown return.
Army turned the ball over twice in the game, leading to 10 Scarlet Knights’ points.
Army picked up a first down on its first possession, but the Rutgers’ defense forced the first turnover of the game when Zaire Kitchen knocked the ball out Bowden’s hands and Lefeged scooped it up and sprinted 58 yards for a touchdown. The PAT put Rutgers in front, 7-0, with 13:13 left in the first quarter. It was the fourth time this season an Army opponent returned a fumble for a touchdown.
The Black Knights took the ensuing possession into Rutgers’ territory, but the drive stalled at the Scarlet Knights’ 33-yard line. Matthew Campbell’s 50-yard field goal attempt fell short. The Scarlet Knights were poised to extend their lead after Young burst up the middle for 26 yards on the first play, and Teel hit Jack Corcoran on a 22-yard pass on the next snap to put the ball at the Army 19-yard line. On 3rd-and-7, Britt took a short pass and appeared to score, but the play was called back because of a holding penalty. An incomplete pass set up San San Te’s 40-yard field goal attempt that was blown wide left by the swirling wind.
Following an Army punt, the Scarlet Knights hit another big play when Teel found Britt for a 44-yard pick up down the right sideline. Rutgers had 1st-and-goal at the Army 5-yard line before a holding penalty backed up the offense 10 yards. On third down, Tell hit Britt in the end zone, but he could not keep his feet in bounds, setting up Te’s 32-yard field goal attempt that split the uprights to give Rutgers a 10-0 lead with 1:22 left in the first quarter.
The Black Knights went three-and-out on its next possession, and following an Andrew Rinehart punt, Rutgers took over at its won 29-yard line. The Scarlet Knights needed just two plays to cross midfield. Army appeared to force its first turnover of the day, but a fumble by Teel on a sack by Bentler was disallowed because the officials ruled Teel’s forward progress was stopped. Teel hit Britt for 19 yards on the next play, and two plays later, he found Graves down the middle of the field for a 26-yard touchdown. The PAT pushed the margin to 17-0 with 11:14 left in the half.
Aided by a roughing the passer penalty on third down, Army moved the ball inside the Rutgers’ 40-yard line, but with the offense on the field on 4th-and-2 from the 35, the Black Knights were called for delay of game and punted the ball away. Rutgers’ big-play offense continued to show itself with Britt gaining 23 yards on first down and Martinek moving the ball into Army territory on a 12-yard run. The Scarlet Knights were inside the Army 30-yard line two plays later, but the Army defense stiffened and forced a 39-yard field goal attempt by Te. The kick was true, extending the lead to 20-0 with 2:32 left in the half.
The ensuing kickoff went out of bounds, setting up the Black Knights at the Rutgers’ 40-yard line. After a 16-yard run by Bowden on first down, the sophomore called his own number again, but fumbled after a gain of four yards. Lefeged recovered for Rutgers and the Scarlet Knights took over on their own 40-yard line. Back-to-back Teel to Britt hook ups put Rutgers at the Army 24-yard line, and the RU signal caller connected with Underwood for 15 yards to give the Scarlet Knights a 1st-and-goal at the 9-yard line. After a 4-yard run, Teel and Britt appeared to have hooked up for another score, but the Rutgers’ receiver was called for pass interference to move the ball back to the 19-yard line. The Scarlet Knights picked up nine yards on the next play, but Bentler knocked down an attempted screen pass on third down to prevent further movement. Te came on and kicked his third field goal of the half, a 27-yarder, to make the score 23-0 with 14 seconds left in the half.
Rutgers outgained the Black Knights in the first half, 307-111. Teel completed 16 of 23 throws for 237 yards and a score. Britt caught eight passes for 137 yards, while Graves had three catches for 42 yards and a touchdown in the first two quarters. Bowden led the Army offense with 64 rushing yards on 14 carries.
The teams traded punts to start the second half, but the Scarlet Knights found the end zone on their second possession of the third quarter. Tim Brown capped a 7-play, 82-yard drive with a 19-yard run on an end around. Te’s extra point extended Army’s deficit to 30-0 with 6:33 left in the quarter.
Army scored its first points on its ensuing possession. Mooney broke free for a 46-yard gain to the Rutgers’ 10-yard line and then went eight more down to the two. The Black Knights went for it on 4th-and-goal from the 1-yard line, but the play was whistled dead after a false start penalty. Campbell’s 24-yard field goal was good to cut the Rutgers’ lead to 30-3 with 2:56 left in the third quarter.
The Teel to-Britt connection struck again on Rutgers’ next possession when the junior receiver hauled in a 41-yard pass down to the Army 24-yard line. The Scarlet Knights were poised to score again, but Anderson stripped Martinek on the 2-yard line and recovered the ball to give Army a first down.
Army could not convert on the turnover, but quickly forced another when Anderson decked backup quarterback Domenic Natale and jarred the ball loose. Bentler fell on it to give Army a first down at the Rutgers’ 28-yard line. Army was stopped and third down, but a personal foul penalty set up the Black Knights at the Rutgers’ 11-yard line. Army reached the 7-yard line, but Bowden was sacked to force a 37-yard field goal attempt that sailed wide right.
Rutgers chewed up the clock on its next possession, driving 74 yards in 12 plays and taking 7:49 off the clock. The Black Knights stopped the Scarlet Knights’ on 4th-and-goal , but an offside penalty gave RU another shot. The Army defense was up to the challenge stuffing the Rutgers’ ball carrier for a 3-yard loss and giving Army a first down with 36 seconds left.
The Black Knights ran two plays to run out the fourth-quarter clock.
Army has a week off before facing arch-rival Navy in the 109th Army-Navy Classic at Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field on Saturday, Dec. 6.