Memphis survives missed opportunities to beat Navy
Riley Patterson’s 26-yard field goal with 10:53 left in the game Saturday night lifted Memphis to a 10-7 American Athletic Conference win over Navy in Annapolis, Md.
The Tigers (6-2, 4-2 AAC) tied a season low for points and rushed for only 75 yards against an opponent that was allowing 244.3 yards per game against the run, but maintained their hopes of playing in the AAC title game.
Quarterback Brady White completed 18 of 32 passes for 205 yards and a touchdown. His most important throw covered 16 yards to Tahj Washington on third-and-11, giving the Tigers a key first down and allowing them to run out all but 12 seconds of the game’s final 4:42.
The Midshipmen (3-5, 3-3) could have tied the game, but Bijan Nichols missed wide right on a 45-yard field goal attempt on their last drive. Navy also used all three timeouts on that drive, preventing it from stopping the clock on the Tigers’ last possession.
Nelson Smith carried the Midshipmen offense with 142 yards and their only score on 29 carries. Quarterback Tyger Goslin connected on 3 of 9 passes for 73 yards and an interception.
Playing its first game since Oct. 31 due to two off-weeks and a COVID-19 cancellation last week at South Florida, Navy initiated the scoring with 6:07 left in the first quarter when Smith rumbled 22 yards for a touchdown. Memphis quickly responded, finding the end zone only 2:15 later on White’s 14-yard strike to Calvin Austin.
That was it for the offenses until the fourth quarter. The game became a surprising slugfest, with the Midshipmen controlling the ball for the most part but unable to convert chances into points.
The Tigers also whiffed on scoring opportunities, like one where they started at the Navy 40 and settled for a 52-yard field goal attempt that sailed wide right.
Goslin threw an interception with 90 seconds left in the first half with the Middies in field goal position at the 17-yard line. Memphis responded by losing a fumble four plays later at the end of White’s 28-yard completion to Washington with 45 seconds remaining, squandering a scoring chance.
–Field Level Media