TEAM Army and Tulane squared off for the 18th time Saturday at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans. Army closed its all-time series deficit to 9-8-1with the victory. Saturday’s win marked the Black Knights second in six Superdome matchups against Tulane. The Black Knights are just 3-5-1 all-time versus Tulane in New Orleans and have won two straight decisions versus the Green Wave in the Crescent City.
With Saturday’s victory, Army has now won four straight games on opponents’ home fields (beginning with a win at North Texas last November). It ranks as Army’s longest winning streak in true road games since the Black Knights won six straight over the 1966 and 1967 seasons. The Black Knights have now won three road games in the same season for the first time since 1967.
Army has won all six coin flips this season. The Black Knights have deferred their choice until the second half in each instance.
The Black Knights enjoyed a 24-7 halftime lead on Saturday, marking their largest halftime lead since owning a 34-7 cushion against VMI in 2006. It ranked as Army’s largest lead over a team from the Football Bowl Subdivision since leading Arkansas State 28-3 at intermission in 2005.
With their 41 point-output on Saturday against Tulane, the Black Knights have now topped 30 points in three straight games for the first time since 1996.
OFFENSE Sophomore QB Trent Steelman drew his 18th consecutive start under center for the Black Knights. Steelman became the first quarterback in Army history to start 12 games last fall. He has not missed a single start during his two-year tenure at West Point.
Freshman SB Raymond Maples drew his first collegiate start in place of Patrick Mealy. Maples became the first freshman to start a game for the Black Knights this season and the 13th different Army player to earn his first collegiate start this season.
Sophomore FB Jared Hassin scored on a 9-yard touchdown run in the first quarter, capping Army’s first possession. It marked the fourth straight time that Army has scored first in a game this season.
Army committed a fumble in the first quarter, snapping a three-game stretch of turnover-free football for the Black Knights. Army had not fumbled since the final minute of its loss to Hawai’i. The Black Knights had gone 190:04 of clock time or 12.5 quarters (spanning four games) without a turnover. Tulane parlayed the fumble into a turnover six plays later to tie the score at 7-7.
Senior WR Davyd Brooks registered his first career touchdown reception in the second quarter, hauling in an 8-yard scoring pass from QB Trent Steelman. It marked Steelman’s fourth touchdown pass of the season.
Sophomore QB Trent Steelman recorded his team-leading seventh touchdown of the season in the second quarter. His 1-yard plunge provided the Black Knights with a 24-7 lead with 1:59 left in the second quarter.
Jared Hassin enjoyed his finest rushing day of the season, finishing with 144 ground yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries. Hassin piled up 82 rushing yards on 13 carries in the first half, alone. Hassin’s previous season rushing high was 83 yards on 20 carries versus Hawai’I on Sept. 11. It stands as the first time an Army player has topped the 100-yard rushing barrier in a game this season.
DEFENSE Junior DB Antuan Aaron registered his first career sack midway through the first quarter, thwarting the Green Wave’s second possession near midfield. He added his first career fumble recovery in the second quarter.
Junior Chad Littlejohn registered his first career forced fumble early in the second quarter. The fumble led directly to an Army touchdown that provided the Black Knights with a 14-7 lead.
Senior DE Josh McNary notched his sixth quarterback sack of the season in the second quarter, forcing a fumble on the play. Tulane recovered the fumble but the play forced the Green Wave to punt on the next play. McNary extended his Academy record career quarterback sack total to 25.0 when he added another sack later in the second quarter. He finished the day with six tackles and two quarterback sacks.
SPECIAL TEAMS Army’s kickoff team forced its fourth fumble of the season in the second quarter. The turnover led directly to a 35-yard field goal by Alex Carlton. The Black Knights forced another fumble on the ensuing kickoff, their kickoff unit’s fifth forced fumble of the season. The Black Knights scored points on the first four turnovers caused by their kickoff team this season, but came away empty on the fifth when Carlton misfired on a 40-yard attempt.
Junior K Alex Carlton drilled a 35-yard field goal in the second quarter, marking his first made field goal since Army’s win over North Texas. He finished the game 2 for 3 and is now 4-for-9 on field goal tries this season.
Carlton moved into eighth place on Army’s career field goals list (22).