Untiltoday, Eddie Meyers had never run more than 31 yards on any play despite being Navy's second-leading career rusher and having gained more than 2,000 yards.
Today, Meyers turned a routine counter play into a 70-yard touchdown run in the second quarter on his way to 172 yards as Navy won its third straight game, 27-0, over William and Mary at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
Meyers wasn't the only big ground gainer for the Midshipmen (5-2). Fullback Tim Jackson ran for a career-best 93 yards and quarterback Marco Pagnanelli ran for 50. The Midshipmen gained 390 yards on the ground; the Indians (2-5) totaled 60.
Navy plays at Notre Dame next week.
William and Mary did outpass Navy today, 156 yards to 96, but the Indians completed only 16 of 38 attempts with three interceptions, two by Navy safety Jeff Shoemake.
The Indians got into Navy territory only three times and had five turnovers, the three interceptions and two lost fumbles. Navy lost one funble and had one pass intercepted.
"I was very disappointed with our offensive performance," said William and Mary Coach Jimmye Laycock. "The pass protection stunk, and (quarterback Chris) Garrity had no time to throw. I don't think any of the interceptions were his fault."
The Midshipmen led, 21-0, at halftime and it looked as if they could have scored 50 points in the game, but the only scoring they got after intermission came on 32- and 21-yard field goals by Steve Fehr, giving him nine in a row over the last three games.
"When you get a 21-0 lead in the first half, you have a tendency to let up and that's what happened to us," said Meyers.
The Midshipmen were leading, 7-0, on a 10-yard Pagnanelli touchdown run when they took possession at their own 27, following a punt by William and Mary. Meyers went staight ahead for three yards, and then, on second down, after taking a handoff from Pagnanelli, started up the middle, veered outside and went 70 yards for a touchdown.
Meyers isn't noted for his speed, but he outran William and Mary safety John Phipps, even though Phipps appeared to have the angle on him.
"It was a counter play to the weak side," Meyers said, "and I have the option of taking it up the middle, off tackle or going outside. All were open, but the outside looked best. That's the first time I've opened up on a long gainer like that since I've been here. It felt good."
Meyers, who said he has recovered from the thigh injury that caused him to miss one game and see only spot duty in two others, has gained 498 yards in the last three games and trails all-time Navy rushing leader Cleveland Cooper by only 299 yards.
Meyers has 2,283 yards and Cooper, 2,582. Meyers has four regular-season games remaining.
Navy put together its most impressive drive late in the second quarter. After taking over at their 28 following a punt by William and Mary, the Midshipmen moved 72 yards in 13 plays, with the biggest gainer a 12-yard run by reserve tailback Rich Clouse.