ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Playing on historic grounds, San Jose State delivered a historic win.
The Spartans shut down Navy's triple-option offense, and freshman Austin Lopez kicked four field goals in a 12-0 win Saturday at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
SJSU (4-1) delivered its first shutout since 2003 and its first shutout of an FBS opponent since 1988.
"Kent Baer and our defensive coaches did a phenomenal job preparing the kids, and the kids played extremely hard," Spartans coach Mike MacIntyre said of his defensive coordinator. "They just kept relentlessly fighting, and I was so proud of their effort. It was a phenomenal day to watch them play defense."
The victory produced a bevy of notable achievements:
The brilliant defensive performance made up for an offense that was effective but couldn't find ways to reach the end zone.
David Fales completed 29 of 34 passes for 276 yards, and the Spartans had 388 yards of offense. SJSU won the time of possession battle by more than 12 minutes and converted on
Those numbers typically add up to success for a team that was averaging 41 points per game in its three previous victories. It was the first time SJSU won a game without scoring a touchdown since a 5-0 victory over Oregon in 1975.
"Our defense stepped up today," Fales said. "We've just got to execute on third and shorts, little stuff, and do the basics."
Travis Johnson had another standout day for SJSU. The senior defensive end had 1½ sacks and three tackles for loss. His forced fumble on Navy's first possession set the tone.
"We worked hard on Navy," Johnson said. "We've been preparing for them for a long time now. Our big focus was to stay disciplined, play how we play and not let anything big happen."
The Midshipmen moved to the SJSU 9-yard line in the game's opening possession before Johnson stripped quarterback Trey Miller. It was Miller's seventh lost fumble this season and 10th turnover overall.
Redshirt freshman Josh Fasavalu, who was starting for SJSU in place of the injured Keith Smith, made the recovery. Fasavalu was making his first start and had played only one defensive snap this year but finished with a team-leading nine tackles.
"I felt good after that," Fasavalu said of the fumble recovery. "I felt like I was part of the defense."
SJSU had several long drives in the first half but had only a Lopez 29-yard field goal in the second quarter to show for it. Two other drives ended inside the Midshipmen 40-yard line, and Fales was intercepted to end a promising possession.
The Spartans started the third quarter with a 14-play drive that stalled at the Navy 2, and Lopez kicked a 19-yard field goal.
Lopez was also good from 32 yards and a career-high-tying 43 yards in the fourth quarter. His four field goals matched the school record, set last year by Jans Alvernik. He's now 9 for 9 in his young career.
"Coach Mac has confidence in me so I feel good going on the field," Lopez said. "I feel like my team supports me."
Navy had only 78 yards after Miller fumbled on the opening drive. Miller, who was also intercepted by SJSU's Damon Ogburn Jr., was replaced in the fourth quarter by Keenan Reynolds.
"They kicked our butts," Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo said. "They played a really good game."
Box score on Page 10. Follow Jimmy Durkin on Twitter at twitter.com/Jimmy_Durkin.