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2014 Poinsettia Bowl Recap

Navy completes comeback to top San Diego State 17-16

Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo was blunt in his assessment of the team’s bowl win over San Diego State.

“I have no idea how we won the game,” Niumatalolo says.

Navy kicker Austin Grebe kicked a go-ahead 24 yard field goal with 1 minute, 27 seconds left.

San Diego State had an opportunity to win the game themselves, but after making his first three field goals Donny Hageman was wide right on a 34 yarder with 20 seconds left.

The game was full of mistakes, but San Diego made the last one and it cost them the game.

The Midshipmen lost four fumbles, while the Aztecs had three turnovers of their own.

"We played really, really well on defense," Niumatalolo said. "Our defense gave us a chance. We put our defense in some bad spots with turnovers on offense, but they didn't flinch. They played phenomenal.

Navy’s winning drive was set up when Chris Johnson forced and recovered a fumble from running back Donnel Pumphrey. The midshipmen then converted on a fourth and one and Ryan Williams-Jenkins had a 28-yard rush to set up the winning field goal.

San Diego State then drove the ball to the Navy 17, but Hageman missed the field goal.

Quarterback Keenan Reynolds extended his scoring streak to 64 games with two touchdown rushes and along with Williams-Jenkins and Chris Swain helped Navy rush for 254 yards.

Pumphrey set an SDSU rushing record with 1,867 yards on the season after he added another 112 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries.

The bowl win gave Navy it’s fourth straight on the season and pushed its Poinsettia Bowl record to 2-2. It also avenged a 2010 35-14 loss to SDSU in the Poinsettia Bowl.


By Nikolai Gionti
DFN Sports Guest Writer

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