1:30 PM ET, September 11, 2004
Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, MD
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) -- For the second week in a row, Navy quarterback Aaron Polanco rushed for more than 100 yards in leading the Midshipman to victory.
This week, Polanco gained 143 yards on 29 carries and scored three touchdowns to lead Navy to a 28-24 win over Northeastern.
Polanco scored on runs of 2, 2 and 1 yards. Overall, Navy rushed for 300 yards on 58 carries. Kyle Eckel added 55 yards on 18 carries, Trey Hines gained 47 yards and Frank Divis ran for 55 yards and a score.
"The bottom line is that we won the game," Navy head coach Paul Johnson said. "It wasn't pretty, but they never are here. Every game is a struggle, but to our guys' credit they found a way to win."
Navy (2-0), which trailed 17-14 at the half, won its first two games of the season for the first time since 1996.
Navy scored on its first two possessions of the second half, driving 59 yards for the go-ahead score, then taking advantage of a pass interception by Reggie Sealey to set up a short drive for a second score and a 28-17 lead.
Polanco's 1-yard run capped the first drive, and Divis' 3-yard run capped the other.
Northeastern came back and scored on a 19-yard pass from Shawn Brady to Cory Parks to close to 28-24 before the end of the quarter, but an interception and a recovery by Josh Smith of an errant lateral shut down the Huskies the rest of the way.
The Midshipmen committed three turnovers, including a pass on the first play of the game that set up a Northeastern touchdown and a play that saw a punt bounce off a Navy player and be recovered by a Northeastern player.
Northeastern stayed in the game until the final minutes. The Huskies drove to midfield with two minutes to play, but Brady's fourth-down pass was knocked down by Baba Akingbemi.
After getting 563 points last week, Northeastern was held to 284 yards offense. Brady completed 20 of 29 passes for 176 yards and threw a 19-yard touchdown pass, but he was intercepted three times and had a fourth turnover on the bad lateral.
Northeastern's Richard Orah intercepted two Polanco passes. Orah's interception and return on the first play of the game gave the Huskies the ball at the Navy 1 to set up Brady's 1-yard run just 64seconds into the game.
The second-quarter Huskies punt hit Navy's Byron McCoy in the back of the head and was recovered by Northeastern's Gavin Potter to set up a 23-yard field goal by Milo Kesic with three seconds left.
Polanco scored both first-half touchdowns for Navy. He capped a four-play, 61-yard drive with a 2-yard run to counter Northeastern's first score, also picking up 36 yards on a run.
A punt by Kesic pinned Navy at the 2 and the Huskies' defense held. After the Navy punt, Northeastern took over at the 31 and took the lead 14-7 with 11:04 left in the half on a 24-yard run by Anthony Riley.