It was anchors aweigh for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in the first half against the Navy Midshipmen. The Irish built a 27-0 lead in the first half on the back of an efficient offense that saw three Dexter Williams touchdown runs. They were also getting it done on defense by holding Navy to just 72 TOTAL yards before the half.
The Irish did that while fighting through a handful of bad omens. Miles Boykin fumbled on the second play of the game, Jonathan Doerer missed a PAT, and Drue Tranquill was carted off the field with an injury.
Still, it felt like an absolute blowout was brewing in San Diego.
Then the second half happened. Navy scored on their first two drives with the help of two big plays. A big run from Navy that saw some poor tackling from Troy Pride, and a long pass in the second drive right in front of Julian Love. The second drive ended with a Zach Abbey touchdown run, and it started to look like a game with a 30-14 Irish lead.
Notre Dame answered with a 9-play, 75-yard drive that ended with a Miles Boykin touchdown grab to make it 37-14. After the Irish forced Navy to punt, Ian book threw a terrible interception, and the Midshipmen took 2 plays to go 39 yards for a touchdown. Navy scored on a 2-point conversion attempt, and once again, it started to look a little tight with a 37-22 Irish lead and a little over 12 minutes to go in the game.
The Irish played it cool and followed with another 75-yard touchdown drive that ended with another Miles Boykin catch in the endzone. With Notre Dame now up 44-22, and only about 7:30 left in the game, there was finally some of that breathing room they had in the first half.
If the fate of the game hadn’t already been sealed, it pivoted that way with Navy driving — but fumbling. Jamir Jones jumped on the loose ball, and the Irish offense took the field with a little over 6 minutes left in the game.
In typical Irish fashion, instead of going for it on 4th and inches, they punted the ball away — but held on after Jalen Elliott intercepted Navy on their final drive. Notre Dame won 44-22.
More to come on One Foot Down about the win that put the Irish at 8-0 for the season.