Navy outlasts Tulsa 42-40
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) Navy quarterback Will Worth ran for 122 yards and scored three touchdowns and the Midshipmen took control of the American Athletic Conference's West Division with a 42-40 victory over Tulsa on Saturday.
Navy (7-2, 5-1) is now in the driver's seat to earn a spot, and possibly host, the AAC championship game on Dec. 3. The Midshipmen have won 15 consecutive games at home – the second-longest home streak in the nation behind Clemson, which has won 20 straight.
''This was a great football game,'' Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo said. ''Sometimes, I wish I was just in the stands, watching as a fan. These games are not good on the heart. I'm proud of our guys. We found a way to make enough plays. We had a hard time trying to stop those guys.''
Worth, who also threw for a score, has a touchdown in all nine games this season, tying Chris McCoy (1995-97) for the second-longest streak in school history. It was also Worth's fifth-straight game with 100 or more rushing yards.
''Every week, he keeps coming and doing great things,'' Niumatalolo said. ''He played well. He's a tough, physical kid. A great leader.''
Tulsa quarterback Dane Evans became the school's all-time passing leader after going 16 of 27 for 369 yards with four touchdowns. Evans also had a 1-yard touchdown run that pulled the Golden Hurricane to within 38-37 with 10:34 left in the game.
Justin Hobbs caught five passes for 123 yards, while Josh Atkinson had five receptions for 102 yards with a touchdown for Tulsa (7-3, 4-2).
''I thought it was a heck of a college football game,'' Tulsa coach Philip Montgomery said. ''Two teams playing at a high level. Both of them executing really well. I thought we did what we had to do. Came up a little bit short and ran out of a little time.''
Midshipmen senior Dishan Romine ran for 97 yards on six carries and got his first career touchdown with a 41-yard scamper that provided a 14-10 lead. Romine also had a 48-yard return on the opening kick-off that set up Navy's first touchdown.
TULSA: The loss to Navy likely ends the Golden Hurricane's AAC title hopes, but Tulsa became bowl-eligible Oct. 29 with a win at Memphis.
NAVY: The Midshipmen have a contractual agreement to play in the 2016 Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl as an Independent before joining the AAC. However, Navy could still earn a spot in the Group of Five New Year's Six Bowl that pre-empt that earlier agreement.
TULSA: The Golden Hurricane play Saturday at Central Florida, which came away with a 45-30 victory last season.
NAVY: The Midshipmen travel to East Carolina on Saturday to make up a game postponed Oct. 13 because of Hurricane Matthew.