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Dungey, innovative plays lead Syracuse to first bowl game in 5 years

first_imgFor the first time since 2013, Syracuse will be headed to a bowl game. The Orange (6-2, 3-2 Atlantic Coast) defeated No. 22 North Carolina State 51-41 on Saturday night in the Carrier Dome. Led by Eric Dungey’s 443 total yards the Orange held off Wolfpack as the senior quarterback surpassed Donavan McNabb as the all-time leader in total offense.Final stand With just more than three minutes remaining, NC State quarterback Ryan Finley and the Wolfpack took the field trailing by three. On 1st-and-10, Finley threw down the right sideline to Thayer Thomas. As the ball dropped into a catchable area for Thomas, redshirt senior Antwan Cordy lept and tipped the ball out of Thomas’ reach.On second down, Finley swung the ball out to running back Reggie Gallaspy. As one of the last lines of defense on the outside, Cordy wrapped Gallaspy’s legs low and rolled him down to the ground for no gain.Cordy, a usual starter, didn’t play much of the game Saturday. After his second down tackle, he let loose. He stomped on the ground, emphasizing each step while nodding his head and clapping in excitement.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAnd the Syracuse defense wasn’t done. A quarterback pressure from Alton Robinson forced a bad pass from Finley on the ensuing third down. Syracuse linebacker Andrew Armstrong intercepted the limp pass, granting SU an eventual final scoring drive.DungeyEarly in the first quarter, Eric Dungey dropped back to pass deep in Syracuse territory. The senior quarterback stepped into the throw and heaved a long pass to Nykeim Johnson past midfield. The sophomore wide receiver cut to the middle of the field broke a tackle and dashed for the end zone.Dungey sprinted to the end zone where he was eventually greeted by redshirt freshman quarterback Tommy DeVito. Seven days prior, the roles were reversed. DeVito’s 42-yard touchdown throw to Johnson tied Syracuse and North Carolina with less than five minutes remaining, and Dungey ran off the sideline to congratulate DeVito.Following DeVito’s 181-yard, three-touchdown performance, Dino Babers opted not to publicly name a starting quarterback headed into the NC State game. In the three games prior to Saturday, Dungey threw three interceptions to one touchdown.On Saturday, the four-year starter threw two touchdowns in the first quarter before finishing the game with 411 yards through the air and three touchdowns.Creation stationSyracuse and North Carolina State each dug deep into their playbooks for an innovative twist on old-school plays.The first came in the second quarter when Dungey ran to his right with Dontae Strickland in what looked like a traditional speed option play. Once Dungey pitched the ball, Strickland dropped back to pass, lofting the ball over an out of position NC State defense for a completion to Sean Riley.In the third quarter, North Carolina State opted for trickery. What appeared to start as a reverse with a running back flipping the ball to a receiver to run the opposite direction, ended as a flea flicker. After receiving the reverse handoff, the NC State receiver flicked the ball back to quarterback Ryan Finley. With Syracuse defensive back Antwan Cordy caught up in the run fake, Finley was able to find Cary Angeline for a 49-yard gain.Later in the third quarter, Syracuse ran a textbook run-pass option, a play style commonly known as an “RPO.” A double pull from the right side of the line and potential run left to Strickland sucked up the Wolfpack defense. Then, Dungey pulled the ball out of the mesh point with Strickland before opting to not run himself. At the last possible moment, as a linebacker smacked Dungey under the facemask, he released a pass to the sideline, hitting Harris in stride for a touchdown. Comments Published on October 27, 2018 at 11:05 pm Contact Josh: jlschafe@syr.edu | @Schafer_44 Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

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