Last week’s 28 unanswered points against Hawaii was a great sign to take out of a rough loss, but a 24-0 shutout a week later is impressive. Patrick Mealy, Malcolm Brown and Trent Steelman each scored rushing touchdowns and Alex Carlton kicked a field goal as Army pitched its first shutout since Oct. 22, 2005. Even better, it was Army’s first shutout at Michie Stadium since a 30-0 victory over Colgate on Sept. 11, 1993.
“It’s hard to win a football game, and it’s especially hard to shut a football team out,” said head coach Rich Ellerson. “That was a great day for our defense because our defense hasn’t felt great coming off the field the last couple of games. They have such high standards and expectations for themselves.”
“It feels great. We practice every week to pitch a shutout,” said senior Stephen Anderson. “As long as our eyes and feet are right, and as long as we stay confident about what each other is doing, as well as what we’re doing, it comes down to execution.”
“We were just flying around. We stayed hungry and in hot pursuit,” McNary said. “When they made the transition to (wide receiver Riley) Dodge, we had to be a little more cognizant of his outside releasing and his running ability. Throughout all four quarters, we just stayed hot and pinned their ears back.”
“We knew we had to be ready for that this game,” Trimble said. “We did the little things right during practice and did the same during the game. The defensive backs are in position to make a play on that, and I was in position as well.”
Someone asked me Saturday what happened to “the tall guy” — that’s a good question. Former receiver Ali Villanueva graduated, joined the 10th Mountain Division, and now he’s in Ft. Benning, Ga., trying not to hurt the feelings of his fellow soldiers during an IBOLC (Infantry Basic Officer Leadership Course) training camp — a pretty funny, and well-done video about the training camp features Lt. Villanueva vowing to be a more sensitive platoon leader after seeing half his team’s backpacks go up in smoke in a forest fire. He then pretty easily out-muscles an instructor in a fight at the very end.