WEST POINT – Army trailed Louisiana-Monroe 17-7 midway through the second quarter. It then all clicked for the Black Knights as they scored 31 unanswered points spanning from just before halftime to the five-minute mark in the fourth quarter to take a commanding 38-17 lead, which resulted in a 48-24 Army victory on Saturday. Army rushed 62 times for 441 yards (7.1 avg.), its third 400+ rushing performance of the season (all in wins). Army was lead by QB Jemel Jones, making his second consecutive start, who rushed 17 times for 96 yards and a career-best three rushing TDs.
The Warhawks received the opening kick, and Army LB Leo Lowin picked up a sack on third down near midfield to force a punt. However, a roughing the punter penalty on the play gave ULM a first down; the Warhawks eventually settled for a field goal with the Army defense getting a pivotal stop in the red zone.
On Army’s opening drive of the game, they were able to quickly drive across midfield with RB Braheam Murphy breaking loose for a 40-yard run on the Black Knights second play from scrimmage. The run would eventually set up a fourth-and-four for Army, with QB Jemel Jones taking the quarterback keeper down the right sideline for a 31-yard rushing touchdown with 6:02 remaining in the first quarter.
Trailing 7-3, ULM put together another drive reaching the red zone, setting up a fourth and goal from the three-yard line as time expired in the first quarter. Faced with a decision at the goal line, the Warhawks kept the offense on the field. Army was able to get the stop on fourth down by S Quindrelin Hammonds breaking up the pass on a quick slant attempt.
After the Army offense turned it over on downs deep inside its own territory, the Warhawks capitalized on the first play of the drive with a 12- yard touchdown pass from Chandler Rogers to Boogie Knight. The ULM score gave them a 10-7 lead with 12:49 left in the half.
Army’s ensuing drive would result in a punt, with Billy Boehlke pinning the Warhawks down at their own 2-yard line. However, the Warhawks moved quickly with a 69-yard rush with Hammonds making touchdown saving tackle on a hustle play. ULM’s Andrew Henry would find paydirt with a rushing score a couple of plays later, giving ULM a 17-7 lead with 5:43 left in the half.
Needing a score before the break, the Army offense delivered with an 11 play, 75-yard touchdown drive. Jones led the way with 38 yards rushing on the drive which featured sizable gains from RB Ay’Jaun Marshall, RB Tyson Riley and Murphy on the ground. With 38 seconds remaining, Jones scored on a two-yard plunge to make it a 17-14 contest at the break.
Army was set up with good field position to begin the second half following a 49-yard return from Braheam Murphy. Army picked up three first downs on the drive through runs from RB Jakobi Buchanan, RB Maurice Bellan and Jones before kicking a 38-yard field goal from Quinn Maretzki to tie the score at 17.
On the first play of the Warhawks next drive, LB Leo Lowin intercepted his second pass in as many weeks, setting up the Black Knights right at midfield with a chance to retake the lead. The Black Knights drove down behind the duo of Riley and Buchanan, setting up third and goal at the ULM six-yard line. Jones would break left, fighting through a facemask penalty to dive across the goal line for his third rushing touchdown of the game. Army led 24-17 with 3:40 remaining in the third period after the extra point from Maretzki.
Playing with the lead again, the Black Knights would force a three and out after pinning the Warhawks at the 14-yard line following the kickoff. Army’s ensuing drive was a highlighted by a 36-yard throw and catch down the left sideline from Jones to Marshall to set up first and goal. Two plays later, Tyson Riley took a handoff up the middle for a three-yard Army touchdown to make the score 31-17 just before the end of the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Army punched in another touchdown by Buchanan from three-yards out to make it 31 unanswered points to take a commanding 38-17 lead. ULM would find the endzone again by way of a Rogers pass to WR Jevin Frett with five minutes to go in the ballgame. Army would strike again by a 37-yard FG by Maretzki and then with a 64-yard touchdown run by sophomore quarterback Bryson Daily, the first of his career.
Army has won back-to-back games at Michie Stadium and improve to 3-4 on the season. Army will have a bye week next weekend followed by the first service academy game of the season on Nov. 5 vs. Air Force in Arlington, Texas.