Scores

Final

Army 27

(2-6)

Air Force 24

(3-7, 2-5 MW)

Coverage: ESPN Classic

3:30 PM ET, November 5, 2005

Falcon Stadium, Usaf Academy, CO

1 2 3 4 T
ARMY 3 10 7 727
AFA 7 7 3 724

Top Performers

Passing: S. Carney (AFA) - 194 YDS, 1 TD

Rushing: C. Jones (ARMY) - 33 CAR, 146 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: W. Hill (ARMY) - 7 REC, 114 YDS

Army gets first win at Air Force in 28 years

AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. (AP) -- Carlton Jones is helping Army forget some early season struggles.

Jones ran for 146 yards and a touchdown, and Army forced a late fumble to preserve a 27-24 victory over Air Force on Saturday.

The victory was the second straight for Army, which opened its season with six straight losses. The win also kept the Black Knights in contention for the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy.

"This one feels good, feels really good," Jones said. "We're still alive for the trophy and that will make a nice, happy trip home."

It was Jones' third 100-yard game this season for Army, which ended an eight-game losing streak against the Falcons and beat Air Force at the academy for the first time in 28 years.

When it was over, players stormed the field with helmets held in the air and assistant coaches clicked their heels and pounded on the wall of their press box booth.

Scott Wesley ran for two second-half touchdowns for Army (2-6), which is tied with Navy for the trophy with one win each over Air Force. Army plays Navy on Dec. 4.

"It feels darn good, but we can't overlook Massachusetts," Army coach Bobby Ross said of next week's opponent. "We don't have a breather, and that's the way it's been all year."

The game was another disappointment for the Falcons, whose season has been marred by a controversy that began when coach Fisher DeBerry made statements about black athletes and recruiting.

In discussing a 48-10 loss to TCU earlier this season, DeBerry said it was clear TCU "had a lot more Afro-American players than we did and they ran a lot faster than we did." DeBerry was reprimanded by the school for the comments.

"My heart bleeds for these seniors," DeBerry said. "I wanted them to go out on a winning note."

It also was only the fourth time Air Force (3-7) was swept by Army and Navy since the competition for the Trophy began in 1972. The last time was in 1996.

"I don't know if there's a word to describe it or a way to describe it," Air Force center Jon Wilson said. "As a senior and as a captain, this is tough because this is the first time we've lost to them since I've been here. I'm kind of beside myself right now."

There were some bright spots.

In defeat, quarterback Shaun Carney came off the bench to run for two touchdowns and throw for a third for the Falcons.

Carney, who had a cut on his left hand, took over for starter Adam Fitch after two possessions and had 16 carries for 104 yards and was 16-for-21 passing for 194 yards.

Jason Brown had four receptions for 72 yards and a touchdown, but that was negated by Air Force's two fumbles and a blocked punt that either set up Army scoring drives or stalled its own drives.

"The story of the game may have been turnovers and the fact that we didn't turn the ball over," Ross said.

Army took a 3-0 lead on Justin Koenig's 39-yard field goal after Michael Herndon blocked a punt by Chris Carp on Air Force's first possession.

The Black Knights failed to capitalize on a second turnover, which led to Air Force's first score. The Falcons stopped Army on downs, then drove 60 yards on seven plays to position Carney for a 1-yard TD sneak to lead 7-3 in the first quarter.

The lead changed twice in the second quarter, with Jones running for a 22-yard touchdown for Army. Carney came right back with a 34-yard touchdown pass to Jason Brown, putting the Falcons ahead 14-10.

Army pull within one point on Koenig's 22-yard field goal, but he missed a 28-yard attempt that would have given it the lead.

Army took a 20-14 lead in the third quarter when Wesley broke a tackle at the 5 and ran into the end zone on fourth down.

Air Force then was penalized three times after reaching the Army 1 and had to settle for a 25-yard field goal by Scott Eberle.

Wesley's 1-yard TD run capped an 11-play, 75-yard drive to put Army ahead 27-17, then Carney scored on a 7-yard run with 5:33 remaining to make it 27-24.

Air Force forced a punt and drove to the Army 48 in the final minute. But Chad Hall fumbled the ball, and Army defensive end Brandon Thompson recovered with 55 seconds left to preserve the win.

"That was a huge play," Ross said. "I saw the ball pop out, but I thought their guy might have fallen on it, but then I saw that we had it."

SPONSORED HEADLINES